web analytics
July 5, 2015 / 18 Tammuz, 5775
At a Glance
Blogs
Sponsored Post


Are We Fulfilling our Mission to the World?

I get so worked up when one of us, especially one who is observant, somehow misbehaves in any way.

Gene Wilder as Avram Belinski, a Polish rabbi who is traveling to San Francisco, and Harrison Ford as a bank robber who befriends him, in the 1979 movie The Frisco Kid.

Gene Wilder as Avram Belinski, a Polish rabbi who is traveling to San Francisco, and Harrison Ford as a bank robber who befriends him, in the 1979 movie The Frisco Kid.

One of the things I talk about frequently here is that part of our mission as Jews to be a light unto the nations… to show the world the beauty of the Torah. As this week’s Parsha (Torah portion) suggests (Devorim 4:6) ‘Chochmosam Uvinaschem L’Einei Ha-amim…’   ‘Your wisdom and understanding (will be) before the eyes of the nations’.  ‘…V’Omru Rak Am Chacham V’navon HaGoy HaGadol Hazeh ‘– ‘And (the nations) will say: How wise and understanding is this great nation!’

This is why I get so worked up when one of us, especially one who is observant, somehow misbehaves in any way. In my sense of duty that stems from this mandate, I want to assure anyone who reads my blog that Judaism as expressed in the Torah does not approve of such behavior at all and instead condemns it. It is our sense of right and wrong which stemming from a clear understanding of the Torah that we are obligated to project.

I have often commented that there are non Jews that read this blog. It therefore obligates anyone who comments on my posts to realize that the way they comment reflects on the Judaism they are supposed represent. Every once in a while – someone comes along who thinks I am targeting his segment of Judaism – trying to make them look bad.

That is of course not true. Any criticism I may have stems from a love of the Jewish people and the desire to improve all of us as a people, both in material ways and spiritual ways. And yet such individuals somehow are blinded to that fact and proceed to exhibit rude and disrespectful behavior, really out of line with the other commenters.

They are there seeming to pick fights all the time. They actually bring down the level of discourse because ultimately people respond to non-constructive comments and those particular discussion trails are usually not very productive.

In the interests of presenting opposing views, I tend to give these people some latitude. Although I will occasionally delete or modify those comments that cross the lines of common decency. But I wonder if I sometimes go too far in granting this latitude. Am I being counter-productivein doing so? What do non Jewish readers of my blog really think? What are they left with after all is said and done?

Yesterday I received a note from a non Jewish reader. I am posting in full that part of the e-mail that she gave me permission to quote. It follows:

Dear Rabbi Maryles,

I have been reading your blog for about half year now, and I find it very interesting and informative.  I am not Jewish, but I think the topics you discuss and the comments from the majority of your followers are diverse and interesting and clearly coming from an educated background.  I feel like I am learning more about the world by reading your blog and then seeing the heated but generally good-natured debate from your loyal followers.  I also find it very interesting and refreshing when you change your opinion on something based on the comments/discussions.   I totally respect your freedom of speech policy on your blog, but I thought you might be interested in hearing the opinion of a mainly silent (non-commenting) reader who nonetheless really enjoys your blog.  I think that because it is your blog you have every right to restrict rude comments, or not respond at all to people who don’t know how to behave themselves, just because they are anonymous.  Keep up the good work!

Best wishes, Andrea Itano

First, I want to thank Ms. Itano for her kind words. I am happy to see that the overall impression of the non Jewish world that reads my blog is very positive… at least as far as one reader has expressed it.

What she did not want me to post is her problem with the kind of comments I referred to above. She was very detailed about those concerns. I think it behooves all of us to behave like ‘the people of the book’ that God intends for us to be. And those who comment here should be aware that not only are all types of Jewish eyes upon us, gentile eyes are upon us, too. Not to mention God’s ‘eyes’.

If you are a non Jew who reads this blog, how would you rate it?

I have set up 3 easy polls on the margin to the right. One asking non Jews to rate this blog; one asking Jews to rate this blog; and a 3rd asking what your religious affiliation is (if any). Please check the box or boxes that most apply. After voting please comment as to why you voted as you did.

If possible I would also like to know in more detail what your background is. For example if you are Protestant which denomination? If you checked ‘other’ which religion is it… Hindu? Buddhist? If atheist, please say if you are a strong or weak atheist or agnostic… and which religion you have come from. Please explain your background more fully if you are so inclined in the comment.

I would also appreciate explanations for your vote. For example, do you gain insight into Judaism from it? Do you feel we fulfill our mission? Does this blog add or detract from it? Do you see the beauty of the Torah – or have at least have sense about it from what you read here? Just say what you feel and don’t hold back any criticisms you may have. We all learn from our mistakes. Pointing them out will only serve to improve this blog.

Finally I just want to thank all of my readers once again, for making this blog as successful as it is.
Visit Emes Ve-Emunah .

About the Author: Harry Maryles runs the blog "Emes Ve-Emunah" which focuses on current events and issues that effect the Jewish world in general and Orthodoxy in particular. It discuses Hashkafa and news events of the day - from a Centrist perspctive and a philosphy of Torah U'Mada. He can be reached at hmaryles@yahoo.com.

The author's opinion does not necessarily reflect the opinion of The Jewish Press.

If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

No Responses to “Are We Fulfilling our Mission to the World?”

Comments are closed.

Binyamin and Chaya Maryles, uncle and aunt of Emes Ve-Emunah author Harry Maryles.
Current Top Story
Iranian FM Javad Zarif and US Secy of State Kerry on the Fourth of July.
Report: Iran Deal Reached — on Sanctions Relief
Latest Blogs Stories
Many Moments with Jerusalem's Jordana!

Moving to Israel seems crazy but this week’s my first “aliyaversary,” my Aliyah anniversary! WOW!

Malachi Rosenfeld HY"D

Israel & world Jewry are under attack and in grave danger but UN’s focus is denouncing Israel

Doug Goldstein

What is human chess? How easy is it to predict the actions of others?

Rethink UN bias against Israel

It’s time to stand up against the bias & no longer accept the constant UN prejudice against Israel.

Malachi Moshe Rosenfeld, injured in a terror attack in Samaria, has died (HYD)

Allah is NOT merciful: Stabbing, beheading, shooting innocents is barbaric & cowardly acts of terror

How could the Jerusalem Post think the attack could have been other than a terrorist act?

Going to Mt of Olives cemetery was like visiting Jurassic Park in a jeep with dinosaurs rampaging

Hanan Porat z”l, teary-eyed said ” We returned to the Gush(Etzion)we shall return to the Gush(Katif)

“Mispachology”: Theory you share a common link with someone you’ve never met or been in contact with

It seems that Pres. Rivlin has joined all other so-called Right politicians and now is trending Left

Dear Muslims, Happy Ramadan. It’s clear from the news that your people are having a “bang-up” month

The President was right, every Jew should have a gun. He just asked the wrong person about it.

Everybody knows that during Ramadan Arab Muslim terror attacks increase.

UN says Hamas tried to warn us of rocket attacks? I was here. Not once did those…I want to scream

{Originally posted to the author’s website, Emes Ve-Emunah} The inevitable finally happened. Rabbi Avi Weiss has dispensed with his prior refusal to call his female ordainees ‘rabbis’.  I challenged him to stop dancing around that title with made up titles  (like Raba and Maharat) and he finally rose to the challenge. His motivation in not […]

More Articles from Harry Maryles
YeshivatMaharatLogo_square

{Originally posted to the author’s website, Emes Ve-Emunah} The inevitable finally happened. Rabbi Avi Weiss has dispensed with his prior refusal to call his female ordainees ‘rabbis’.  I challenged him to stop dancing around that title with made up titles  (like Raba and Maharat) and he finally rose to the challenge. His motivation in not […]

hand-76738_640

Existence requires meaning. Believing all random and without meaning is a horrible fate for mankind

People see a healthy parochial school system vs an anemic public school system and draw conclusions

Anyone not fighting this extremism is at best misguided; at worst tacitly approving/aiding extremism

When a young man gets a job he’s broken from the mainstream Chareidi world, complicating his dating

World Jewry, regardless of haskafa, united in solidarity with the parents of the 3 teenagers: Achdus

HaModia’s list of the new government’s ministers omitted the women ministers’ first names: WHY?

Women equalizing with men in all areas of Judaism is anathema to the very idea of male/female roles.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/blogs/haemtza/are-we-fulfilling-our-mission-to-the-world/2013/07/21/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: