Tuesday, February 14, 2012

The number's up for monotheism

Not only has the time come to separate between this monotheism and the state - both the Jewish and Arab state - the time has also come to separate it from the national discourse.

Salman Masalha | The number's up for monotheism

"Right now, most governments in the world are keeping silent despite the calls by the Palestinian mufti [Muhammad Hussein] to kill Jews," said Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, in a speech last month to mark International Holocaust Remembrance Day.

Netanyahu added that he was horrified by the fact "that there is a legacy of hate and destruction, because this mufti is following in the footsteps of that other mufti [Haj Amin al-Husseini, who allied with Hitler] ... and rather than calling for peace and reconciliation, he calls for the destruction of the Jewish people wherever they may be."

Netanyahu was preceded by President Shimon Peres, who also sharply criticized the mufti of Jerusalem. "The mufti's words are dangerous and are liable to bring about an escalation in Jewish-Arab relations, and even loss of life," the president warned.

It's interesting to note that both men were quiet during the scandal raised by Rabbi Yitzhak Shapiro's "The King's Torah," a book giving Jews permission to kill Gentiles who threaten Israel. They and other politicians have also remained silent in the face of petitions and racist statements that have emerged from the study halls of "the sages of the generation" of one type or another.

It seems to me that the ones who ought to be coming out to defend the mufti are exactly those rabbis who cried foul and argued that the state is not permitted to intervene in matters of religion and religious law. So it is with adherents of the infantile monotheism, in all its branches and metastases.

Whoever reads the literature of monotheistic religions, and it doesn't matter which religion, soon learns that it is full of moral abominations. The hadith that the mufti quoted does actually exist in the Islamic branch of monotheism: "Judgment Day will not come only when the Muslims fight the Jews and kill them; the Jew will hide behind the stone and the stone will say, 'Oh Muslim, Oh servant of Allah, there is a Jew behind me, come and kill him.'"

These hadiths and others are part of the eschatological traditions that deal with the End of Days and Judgment Day, and they exist in other cultures as well. Islam did not invent the eschatological wheel. It drew from Judaism and Christianity and invented these and other traditions to serve its very worldly purposes, namely broad conquests.

Muslims don't just fight Jews in the End of Days. These hadiths also tell us that the end of days will not come "until they will fight with Husa and Carman, who are among the Persian peoples." And in another version, "until you fight the Turkish peoples." This is what these people look like: "Red-faced, with flattened noses, narrow eyes, and with round, flat faces like shields."

And if the Jerusalem mufti and other muftis will continue to search through these desert hadiths, there's another surprise awaiting them. In the present cold Jerusalem climate, one wonders what kind of shoes the learned mufti is wearing, since if he would continue to read the fine print, he might find himself on the wrong side. After all, the hadiths also say that "the end of days will not come until you fight the men wearing padded shoes."

In short, not only has the time come to separate between this monotheism and the state - both the Jewish and Arab state - the time has also come to separate it from the national discourse. Because if we don't, this ridiculous and dangerous monotheism will take over and destroy whatever good that remains here.

The little politicians who pretend to teach us "what it means to be Jewish" or "what it means to be Arab" will continue to throw hollow slogans into the air. Meanwhile, we can say about the Israeli-Palestinian situation that not only is "the face of the generation like a face of a dog," but that the face of the "Bibi" is like the face of the "Tibi."

As for the rest, go and learn it.
Published: Opinions-Haaretz, 14 Ferbruary 2012

For Hebrew, press here


Facebook comments:
Post a Comment

Middle East
  • The Arab world's quagmire

    Only a society that can engage in introspection and self-examination can emerge from its dark past and march confidently to a different future. Otherwise, it will continue to sink into the same marshy swamp.

    Read more

    A Feeble Middle East

    The West learned on its own flesh that this region conducts itself by other codes. Iran has continued to entrench its standing by means of its religious ideology. The toppling of Saddam Hussein shattered the illusion of the existence of a unifying “Iraqi identity” and gave an encouraging shot in the arm to Iran, which is forging ahead.

    Read more

  • The decay in the Arab world

    With great sadness, it can be said that in the absence of a sane civil alternative, the Arab world will continue along this path.

    Read more

    Neither Arab nor Spring

    The vicissitudes that have, for some reason, been collectively dubbed the "Arab Spring" are neither Arab nor Spring. One can say that they are actually living proof of the identity crisis and reverberating bankruptcy of Arab nationalism.

    Read more

  • another title

Israel - Palestine
  • Our troubles come from us

    And so we have reached a situation in which every Arab is concerned with his own problems and everyone talks about what preoccupies him personally – that is, his own troubles.

    Read more

  • Never-ending tragedy

    The Israeli right, in all its forms, wants exclusively Jewish control over all of the Land of Israel. To the Palestinians who live in this space, it promises residency – temporary, of course, on condition that they keep their heads down, accept their designated status and behave accordingly.

    Read more
  • Solomon’s Mosque

    Religion, every religion, is the No. 1 enemy of nationalism. But under conditions of tension, such as tribal warfare, these polar opposites combine into a toxic soup that consumes all common sense.

    Read more

  • They see not, nor know

    The term "neutralize" is very popular with people who have served in the security and expulsion forces. The question to be asked is, What did the poet who spoke of "neutralization" mean in this plan?

    Read more

    For Jews only

    From the moment the pundits followed in the footsteps of the politicians, both large and small, they carried this noxious melody everywhere. They were part of legitimizing the illegitimate in Israeli politics.

    Read more

  • With yearning soul

    The Zionism that aspired to establish a "Jewish home" in the Jews' "ancient homeland" did not take into consideration the fact that the land was not empty. It thus adopted the principle of population transfer, based on the same ancient biblical tradition.

    Read more

    Rabbis of the Dry Bones

    Racism surfaces when a society loses its self-confidence and turns to seeking ways to defend itself against what is different and perceived as increasingly threatening.

    Read more

  • الحلم

    أنّي في سجن جدران بيضاء
    حيث لا يعرفني أحدٌ، وأصواتٌ
    تختفي في الرّدهات، وأضواء تستنشقُ
    جمجمتي اللّاهثة.
    تتمة الكلام

Press photo to Email



Site Archive


  • The pit and the pendulum

    In those days, we did not drink four goblets of wine, because everything that gladdens the human heart is not a part of our custom.

    Read more

  • Welcome Back to History

    Islam, like other imperialist ideologies, still needs enemies to flourish. Enemies have served Islam in the past as fuel for its wagons. Without enemies Islam declines and stagnates...

    Read more

  • another title

  • Balkrishna Sama

    Man Is God

    He who loves flowers, has a tender heart.
    he who cannot pluck their blooms,
    has a heart that's noble.

    Read more

  • Martin Niemöller

    First They Came

    First they came for the Communists
    And I did not speak out
    Because I was not a Communist.
    Then they came for the Socialist
    And I did not speak out
    Because I was not a Socialist.

    Read More

  • Salman Masalha

    The Song About the Child

    Boston Gospel Choir

    Text: Salman Masalha
    Composer: Stephen Feigenbaum