So let’s talk about cultural appropriation. These mothereffers are a Christian group looking to convert Jews and were using the shofar, a traditional Jewish instrument used on Rosh Hashanah, in their music. The girl clearly didn’t know how to use it. It’s just so dirty.

The Ark of the Covenant

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10 “They shall construct an ark of acacia wood two and a half [a]cubits [b]long, and one and a half cubits [c]wide, and one and a half cubits [d]high. 11 You shall overlay it with pure gold, inside and out you shall overlay it, and you shall make a gold molding [e]around it.12 You shall cast four gold rings for it and [f]fasten them on its four feet, and two rings shall be on one side of it and two rings on the other side of it. 13 You shall make poles of acacia wood and overlay them with gold. 14 You shall put the poles into the rings on the sides of the ark, to carry the ark with them. 15 The poles shall [g]remain in the rings of the ark; they shall not be removed from it. 16 You shall put into the ark the testimony which I shall give you.

17 “You shall make a [h]mercy seat of pure gold, two and a half [i]cubits [j]long and one and a half cubits [k]wide. 18 You shall make two cherubim of gold, make them of hammered work [l]at the two ends of the mercy seat. 19 Make one cherub [m]at one end and one cherub [n]at the other end; you shall make the cherubim of one piece with the mercy seat at its two ends. 20 The cherubim shall have their wings spread upward, covering the mercy seat with their wings and [o]facing one another; the faces of the cherubim are to be turned toward the mercy seat. 21 You shall put the mercy seat [p]on top of the ark, and in the ark you shall put the testimony which I will give to you. 22 There I will meet with you; and from above the mercy seat, from between the two cherubim which are upon the ark of the testimony, I will speak to you about all that I will give you in commandment for the sons of Israel.

Exodus  25:10-22

Thus did YHWH instruct the Israelites to construct a box to carry the tablets of the covenant between God and the people. The Bible is replete of stories about the Ark. Soon after it was built two nephews of Moses sought to offer a sacrifice to the ark and were incinerated. A man who simply tried to steady it when it seemed ready to topple was struck down. To gaze upon it risked death. To touch it was certain death.

In these pre-electricity days the Bible tells us that the two cherubim which the building of which was so strangely specific would spark and arc energy between them. Although the ark was plated with gold inside and out and had a cover of solid gold it could be carried by four elderly priests for long distances. It was said to levitate and to make an eerie ghostly moaning sound which struck terror into the hearts of Israel’s enemies. It was once captured in a battle by the Philistines who sent it back six months later after strange tumorous growths appeared on those who had been near it. 

One of the most interesting ideas is that the tablets received by Moses were radioactive and the gold covered ark was merely a shielded case. The radioactivity concept is given some credence by descriptions of Moses’ face burned red by the encounter with God and the fact that the priests had to wear special clothing including a large, thick rectangular breast plate called a “hoshen” gold of course being even denser than lead and an even better shielding metal. The ark may have simply ran out of energy over the centuries and stopped working.

Solomon built the Temple to house it. Then, one day, it vanished from scripture and apparently the Earth although several groups have at one time claimed to possess it including the ancient sect of Ethiopian Jews who claim to have it to this day.

๑ Samsaran ๑

I talked to my parents about the high holidays last night.

I called to tell them Shabbat Shalom, and my mom asked me what I was doing for Rosh Hashanah, and to make sure I had a high holiday celebration of some sort. She was very persistent about it and I was doing my best to not lie to her and not make promises I couldn’t keep.

Then Dad got on the phone and told me that I should not in any way feel obligated to do anything for the high holidays, and that he knows whatever way I find to be Jewish is the right way, that there isn’t a wrong way to be Jewish.

This came after years of he and my mom telling me I had to go to the high holiday services, and after they kept pestering me last year and the year before to go to Hillel and told me they were so disappointed when I didn’t. So to have my dad completely change tune and sincerely mean that he knows being Jewish is important to me, even if I celebrate it differently than he does, it meant so much.

Torah Crown

c.1740-1750

Italy

Exceptional for its size and precious material, this Torah crown is a rare survival of 18th-century Italian silver and a testimony to the artistic virtuosity of goldsmithing in Venice. In synagogues the scroll of the Torah, the first five books of the Hebrew Bible, is often decorated with a set of vestments and silver ornaments including a crown or finials, and a shield. The crown augments the Torah’s status as an object associated with royalty and speaks to the centrality of the Torah in Jewish life. The motifs depicted include ritual references such as priestly garments, a miniature temple, a menorah, and the Tablets of the Law, the latter engraved in Hebrew with the Ten Commandments. Such rich embellishment is indicative of the wealth and influential status of the Jewish congregation in the Venetian city state. The maker, Andrea Zambelli, is known to have made a wide range of ritual Judaica as well as religious silver for the local churches. A later inscription in Hebrew documents that this “crown of glory, and diadem of beauty” [Isaiah 28:5], was given by the philanthropist and president of the Jewish community in Padua, Gabriel Trieste, to his congregation in the mid-19th century. (The MET)

MET

A PSA on Jewishness, because apparently non-Jews just have to know this stuff and can't figure it out on their own

Jews are an ethnic group. Global Jewry is made up of several different ethnic groups, the largest of which are: Sefardi Jews, whose ancestors historically lived in the Iberian peninsula (Spain and Portugal) and western Europe; Ashkenazi Jews, whose ancestors historically lived in central and eastern Europe; and Mizrahi Jews, whose ancestors historically lived in MENA (Middle East/North Africa). There are other groups of ethnic Jews living in other places in the world as well. Jews from all of these groups have moved across the world, largely due to persecution in their host countries, and formed new communities in new places, so that there may be longstanding communities of Ashkenazi Jews in France, and Sefardi Jews in Morocco.

All ethnic Jews have ancestral, genetic heritage stemming from the Levant (specifically, the area now known as Israel and/or Palestine). All Jews also have cultural heritage stemming from the Levant. This is no less important or relevant than genetic heritage.

Some Jews have mixed heritage (one Jewish parent only). They are also Jews. The matrilineal descent question is a question of Jewish religious law, and is interpreted differently by different Jewish denominations and individuals. (My personal stance is to affirm patrilineal descent.) 

The religion historically practiced by Jews is Judaism. Ethnic Jews may practice any religion they please; this does not mean they are less Jewish in terms of their heritage. Non-ethnic Jews may convert to Judaism; this does not make them any less Jewish in terms of their religious practice. Judaism does not proselytize.

Judaism as a whole takes no global stance of Zionism as a political ideology. Different Jews have different opinions on Zionisms (plural intentional, because Zionism takes a lot of forms), and while they may be good or bad people, and you may agree or disagree with their politics, their Zionism or anti-Zionism does not inherently make them any more or less Jewish. 

The question of Jewish identity is ultimately not the purview of non-Jews. It is nothing more or less than gross arrogance for non-Jews to assume that their opinions on this question are remotely relevant or of interest to Jews, and the persistent insertion of some non-Jews into these private conversation is extremely offensive.

If you are not Jewish, and have written, or are considering writing, a post on  Jewish identity/ethnicity, I have some advice for you: don’t. You almost certainly don’t know what you’re talking about, and you definitely can’t have a better understanding of these complex issues than someone who is actually Jewish themselves. If you really feel, for some inexplicable reason, that you simply must weigh in on this issue, consult an actual Jew before doing so. 

when goyim say shit like “white jews aren’t oppressed” or “there are more important issues to worry about”, they are falling into the dangerous stigma of “jews run the world” that has caused most of the genocide, expulsion, and restriction of the jewish people.

here are some statistics about recent antisemitism:

if you ignore all of these facts and still claim that white jews are fully assimilated into western society, you are deluding yourself. you are falling into the trap of scapegoating jews for actions we are not responsible for.

by ignoring all these recent issues and claiming that it’s not oppression, you are saying that diasporic jews are deserving of violence. by being silent, you are ignoring an incredibly large issue that has repeated itself over and over again for the past thousands of years.

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This is The Dome of the Rock one of the holiest places in Islam. It sits on Temple Mount in Jerusalem where the Temple of Solomon used to sit in ancient times. The Israelis carefully protect it and well they might because there is a large and growing fundamentalist Christian movement which believes as an article of faith that Jesus will not return until the Temple is rebuilt and that means the destruction of the Dome of the Rock.

Imagine the Israeli government trying to convince the Muslim world that it was a Christian and not a Jew who perpetrated such an act. Now, I am not suggesting that the vast and overwhelming majority of fundamentalist Christians would approve of this barbarity but it only takes a few misguided people convinced that they are acting on God’s orders and with the right skills and access to the right equipment to pull it off.

As for me this is the one time I am actually grateful for the IDF.

This happened in Britain in 2014, not in Germany in 1939.

A British sporting goods chain has apologized for a security guard preventing identifiable Jewish preteens from entering one of its stores.

The seventh-graders were wearing the uniforms of the Yavneh Academy, a Jewish secondary school, when they attempted to enter the Sports Direct store in Borehamwood, Hertfordshire, on Friday, the Jewish Chronicle reported. The guard stopped them at the door and said “no Jews, no Jews.”

Other Yavneh students who wore coats over their uniforms were permitted to enter.

The company apologized and removed the guard, who was fired from the security company for which he worked.

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