web analytics
December 19, 2014 / 27 Kislev, 5775
 
At a Glance
InDepth
Sponsored Post
8000 meals Celebrate Eight Days of Chanukah – With 8,000 Free Meals Daily to Israel’s Poor

Join Meir Panim’s campaign to “light up” Chanukah for families in need.



Home » InDepth » Columns »

The Jewish Economy Triangle: Capitalism, Faith And Loving-Kindness

Like every other aspect of running a country, economics is a complex business. But when the nation’s and individual’s bottom line is God and His directives, greed will evaporate and capitalism based on faith and loving-kindness will flourish. A truly Jewish Israel must adopt the economic structure that will most aptly balance objective economic principles with Jewish values. We can call it the “Jewish Economy Triangle.”


Principle 1: Capitalism

Judaism absolutely recognizes personal property rights, the right to amass and maintain wealth, and the fact that there will never be full economic equality. Moreover, Judaism sees wealth as a sign of blessing. Our patriarchs were all “millionaires.”


Commerce, which socialism sees as negative and tainted by “robbery of the workers,” is viewed in Judaism as an honorable trade, just as any other legitimate source of income. Many of Israel’s sages engaged in commerce, from Rabbi Yehudah Hanasi – who compiled the Mishnah – to the Holy Ari.


Principle 2: Faith

A Jew must always understand that his wealth is not the product of his business acumen, and that he is not its ultimate owner. It is God’s blessing that brings him success, and wealth is nothing more than a deposit – placed in his hands to enable him to do what is right in God’s eyes. According to Judaism, it is permissible and appropriate to enjoy wealth. Judaism does not encourage asceticism, but guides us within the refining cultural framework of Torah. Furthermore, Judaism obligates the Jewish capitalist to perform actions that completely contradict the market orientation of capitalism. The Jew must cease from work on the Shabbat, even if he will lose the economic chance of a lifetime.


During the Temple era, “private enterprise” was even more restricted; all male Jews were commanded to ascend to Jerusalem for the holidays three times a year, leaving their work far behind. The laws of Monetary Sabbatical (Shmittat Ksafim) with its nullification of outstanding loans, and the Jubilee, in which land is returned to its original owner, are obviously the most compelling expressions of the second leg of the economic triangle. Personal property is not exactly personally owned. Judaism periodically levels out the playing field, returning the economic status quo to its starting point – in complete contradiction to capitalism. Laws such as these are held in reserve for the “Era of the Messiah”; yet even now, we can integrate the principles of faith that they embody. The primary economic objective is not growth for its own sake, but rather the spiritual lifestyle that wealth can foster.


Principle 3: Loving-Kindness

Acts of loving-kindness are the responsibility of the individual and the community. Neither shall hide behind state organizations such as social security or welfare. The welfare mandate, like most other authority, will be the responsibility of the community and its elected officials. The local officials must be responsible for the underprivileged of the community. They know them personally and can identify who is truly needy. They will collect the taxes and decide what portion of the district income will be allocated for education, health, welfare, etc. Furthermore, every individual in the community must take personal responsibility for the poor, setting aside a fixed percentage of his income for charity – as the Torah commands.


The Jewish state must cultivate an economic approach that reflects the basic culture of the nation. Jewish leadership that would apply the Jewish Economic Triangle in Israel would pave the way for a flourishing economy, and foster a sense of joy and well-being for all of its inhabitants.


Jewish Prisoners


With the start of the New Year, we fervently pray that the Prisoners of Zion – both within Israel and outside Israel – will shortly return home to their families. First and foremost, we pray for the betrayed Prisoner of Zion, our brother Jonathan Pollard; second, the soldier for whom Israel does not even attempt to exact a price – Gilad Shalit. And of course, we pray for the return of all the Jewish Prisoners of Zion languishing in Israeli jails because Israel “doesn’t have a vested interest” (in the words of Internal Security Minister Avi Dichter) in releasing them – although it is convinced that it does have a vested interest in the wholesale release of Arab murderers. We pray that we will soon merit worthy Jewish leadership that will view the Jewish vested interest as Israel’s vested interest, and that will free all the Prisoners of Zion without delay.


Moshe Feiglin is the founder and president of Manhigut Yehudit, the largest faction inside the Likud party. Manhigut Yehudit (Jewish Leadership) strives to restore Jewish values, pride and integrity to the State of Israel. For more information or to order Feiglin’s newest book, The War of Dreams, visit www.jewishisrael.org.

About the Author: Moshe Feiglin is the Deputy Speaker of the Knesset and a member of Israel's Security and Defense Committee. He heads the Manhigut Yehudit ("Jewish Leadership") faction of Israel's governing Likud party. He is the founder of Manhigut Yehudit and Zo Artzeinu and the author of two books: "Where There Are No Men" and "War of Dreams." Feiglin served in the IDF as an officer in Combat Engineering and is a veteran of the Lebanon War. He lives in Ginot Shomron with his family.


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 “The Jewish Economy Triangle: Capitalism, Faith And Loving-Kindness”

Comments are closed.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Current Top Story
Cinema City Iron Man Theater in Jerusalem. (illustrative)
US Govt IDs North Korea in Sony Cyber Terror Attack
Latest Indepth Stories
Greiff-112814-Men

Am Yisrael is one family, filled with excruciating pain&sorrow for losing the 4 kedoshim of Har Nof

Two dreidels from the author’s extensive collection.

What is its message of the dreidel?” The complexity and hidden nature of history and miracles.

Keeping-Jerusalem

Police play down Arab terrorism as mere “violence” until the truth can no longer be hidden.

Sprecher-121914

The 7 branches of the menorah represent the 7 pillars of secular wisdom, knowledge, and science.

Obama obtained NO verifiable commitments from Cuba it would desist from acts prejudicial to the US

No one would deny that the program subjected detainees to less than pleasant treatment, but the salient point is, for what purpose?

For the past six years President Obama has consistently deplored all Palestinian efforts to end-run negotiations in search of a UN-imposed agreement on Israel.

It’s not an admiration. It is simply a kind of journalist fascination. It stands out, it’s different from more traditional Orthodoxy.

For Am Yisrael, the sun’s movements are subservient to the purpose of our existence.

Israelis now know Arab terrorism isn’t caused by Israeli occupation but by ending Israeli occupation

Anti-Semitism is a social toxin that destroys the things that people most cherish and enjoy.

Amb. Cooper highlighted the impact of the Chanukah/Maccabee spirit on America’s Founding Fathers

Zealousness has its place and time in Judaism; Thank G-d for heroic actions of the Maccabees!

Israel and the strengthening of the Jewish people in faith and numbers has brought a growing light

More Articles from Moshe Feiglin
moshe_feiglin

Israel may be a great democracy but it’s a long way from the Jewish state of liberty of our dreams.

MK Moshe-Feiglin

Israel recognizes the fabrication called a Palestinian nation; So what do we want from the Swedes?

Israel’s Temple Mount policy prefers to blames the Jews-not the attackers-for the crisis.

If Hamas is ISIS, the world asks, why didn’t Israel destroy it given justification and opportunity?

What is the solution? We must declare, and believe, that the Land of Israel is truly ours and once again build in Judea and Samaria.

During the First Lebanon War, the IDF forced the PLO terrorists all the way to the Beirut port and then to Tunisia. The PLO, which had lost its stronghold in Lebanon, was shattered. Salach Taamri, the most senior and admired terrorist captured by the IDF, was imprisoned in the Ansar detention camp. He was a broken man.

Soldiers at various hospitals complained that they experienced hostility from Arab hospital staff.

A murderous uprising is taking place in Israel; On the roads, In the mixed Jewish-Arab cities.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/indepth/columns/the-jewish-economy-triangle-capitalism-faith-and-loving-kindness/2008/10/15/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: