on October 17, 2007
A must read.
When I was in grade school, I went to a Baptist school, i.e. a protestant christian school. I heard tell that the outcome of WWII and the holocaust was a permanent home for the jews. They're safe now I thought to myself. Well, hardly, these days, but at least they're not as vulnerable as they would have been without some changes in international perceptions. And perception is key to their existence.
I've heard tell many a time these days that Zionism is the cause of all of Israel's troubles today. Well, if that is wrong, and I am not wrong, people MUST read this book.
In reading this, I was reminded of the Shrine of the Book at the Israel Museum in Jerusalem. It was my most memorable experience of my pilgrimage to Israel in 2000. Outside was a rectangular, black, concrete or marble slab which represented the sons of darkness. And the Shrine of the Book represented the sons of light. Inside the shrine as inside this particular collection of Israeli essays, were creative thought, prophecy, insight, energy, dynamic, understanding, history, vibration, life. I'll never forget the symbolic contrast between the two and will rest assured the money I paid for even only that was well worth it. I loved the shrine of the book. The structure of the shrine was that of a torah scroll.
So inside this book, you'll find much information. The first section of the book was hard for me to wade through, was almost too theoretical, but took up half the book. Part II, the shortest section, contained two of my favorite essays in the book, one written by a Russian immigrant, physician, Anna Isakova and the other by Ze'ev Maghen. Reading of Anna's travails in Israel, I was reminded of West Side Story and how immigrants struggle with acceptance within the community. It isn't easy, as she explains. Maghen's essay was a pleasant surprise. I was expecting, from an essay entitled "Imagine: On Love and Lennon", thoughts from "a left wing loon", as Bill O'Reilly terms people of the far left political persuasion. Boy, was I surprised. The essay was inspired by a conversation the author had had with jewish Hari Krishnas in L.A. After conversing with them, he finally exclaimed, "What are you doing here!!!" So the whole essay was written to deal with problems of diaspora jewry and assimilation which by the way is a method by which the ancient Romans, not only militarily, but also socially subjugated its people. So, if you read the essay, you'll find that Ze'ev is not a loon after all, and makes absolute, perfect sense.
I sailed through the final historical section, not too much new for me there.
All in all, I HIGHLY RECOMMEND this; it will broaden your horizons, enlighten you on modern Israeli problems, hopefully stirring some innate zionist sentiments within. And yes, salvation is from the jews; they've been fighting terrorism for a long, long, long, long time.