Gott mit uns

Throughout the history of civilisation, the presence of the supernatural is a given. In the dark depths of the lack of knowledge of early human history, maps can be found in divine interpretations, counsel is given from trances and most importantly deeds, good or evil, bear from a higher cause.

Of course, depending on where you look, not much has changed at all. One would be hard pressed to believe that a world where superpowers invade sovereign countries because ‘God’ told them so was a world in the XXI century, and not in the age of the Trojan Wars.

Although many people conduct their lives without having to live under the shadow of self-recriminatory repression, a good many unfortunately still exhibit signs of cult-ish fear.

In an example relevant to the contemporary geopolitical theatre:

From my exposure to Jews from an early age as good friends, I’ve grown to sympathise greatly with the cause of the state of Israel. As a history buff, the stories of all the wars of national defense were analogous to epics of survival. I find that the existence and resilience of the Jewish state today is a testament to the survival instinct of a people who originated as a Middle Eastern tribe in the Bronze Age.

Yet my heart shrinks for every rabbi who indulges in religiously inspired expansionism.

I am, of course, fully aware that one could make a similar case for the Palestinians. It is revoltingly short-sighted to assume that every Palestinian is a suicide bomber. Yet the situation of Islam makes it a separate case to deal with, a case I will perhaps deal in a future post, time allowing (I take the opportunity to apologise profusely to my equally resilient readership – I am currently studying in Engineering which takes up practically 27 hours per day of my time).

The state of Judaea existed in the Bronze Age, that is an undisputable fact. That this piece of infertile desert left Jewish control between then and 1948 is also a fact that nobody will make an effort to fight.

And yet the situation of Israel seems like a perfect opportunity to reconcile the ancient history of both peoples who coincide on the same piece of land.

Although many people conduct their lives without having to live under the shadow of self-recriminatory repression, a good many unfortunately still exhibit signs of cult-ish fear.

What is unfortunate to me, as a slightly Israel leaning outsider, is that there are many elements in the Jewish religious community who hold reactionary, dangerous and very real views about what should be done with the land that surrounds the 1948 borders. Under the secular excuse of maintaining national sovereignty facing a brutal enemy with ambitions of extermination, this land is de-facto occupied.

However, the religiously inspired excuse involved settling and annexing this land in order to restore the ancient kingdom of David.

Any ultra-nationalistic ambition with territorial claims grounded in illuminated parchments of the Bronze Age should be viewed with absolute disdain. Just as any controversial opinion derived from no evidence at all is of no concern to the public, epoch-based ultra-nationalism is something to deride as a delusion, if not because of the dangerous ethnic rearrangement implications then because of the simplistic irredentism of it.

The not uncommon idea that the Jewish people are the apple of Yahweh’s eye leads to this kind of irredentist nationalism. Out of my many Jewish friends it is a few who have said that proof for God’s existence is the survival of the Jewish tribe.

One would wonder why God would bother making 6,2 billion people more than the 20 million Jews he cares about.

Unabashedly arrogant, this interpretation of the supernatural is not particular to ultra-religious Jews, however.

“Gott mit uns” is the motto inscribed on the belt buckles of the Wehrmacht troops of the Third Reich (dispelling the ‘atheistic’ nature of the regime).

My point is that with the blessing of God one finds the perfect moral scapegoat for getting away with acts of breathtaking inanity and no less danger to others, acts that inspected rationally would merit the believer a suite in an asylum.

With the blessing of God, the Jewish people deny themselves the honour of being a people which have known how to survive despite the constant persecution – a skill worth having, a heritage to be proud of. If one were to explain it away as God’s will then the merit fades.

With the blessing of God, one can afford to escape the consequences of brutal acts on other people who presumably have the blessing of God themselves.

With the blessing of God one finds himself with a blank check. Since the laws of the divine take predominance over the earthly (in a spectacularly egoistic and amoral legal hierarchy), one can get away with racist eugenics.

With the blessing of God, one can get away with reviving ancient territorial ambitions at the expense of the existing population (Albanians expelling Serbians from Kosovo to fulfill the prophecies of the League of Prizren, for example – again, a post worth it’s own if I ever get around to it).

With the blessing of God, one can afford to escape the consequences of brutal acts on other people who presumably have the blessing of God themselves.

Geopolitics are better off without supernatural inspirations.

The world is better of without God.


13 Responses

  1. This article has an error. “Gott mit uns” was on the belt buckle of Wehrmacht (army) troops, and was a relic of the imperial era where it was the motto of the Prussian royal family. The Waffen SS instead had their motto “Meine Ehre Heisst Treue” (My Honor is Loyalty) on their buckles, which is an explicitly Nazi motto.

  2. I hear you, and I thank you for your correction. Duly edited.

  3. I cannot speak for every Rabbi in the world, but I can speak as a Jew. There are few Rabbi’s which “indulge in religiously inspired expansionism.” Myself, as a Jew, have learnt that our objective is not to expand the Jewish religion around the world (unlike Islam), but to expand morals and principles that come from the Torah. I am happy to say that we are accomplishing our goal, step by step, even if we once in a while take a step back when being expelled from our land. Principles such as a day of rest are ones which are said to come from ‘Judeo-Christian roots.’ I come here to say that it has come from Jewish roots. But we’ll let it pass as long as that day of rest is kept (that is at least my opinion. What can we do, fight over it?)

    Back to the point. I see in your article a contrast between the religious belief and a nationalist belief on the land of Israel. I also would like to argue about your thought that because it is G-d’s will that we have survived then there is no merit that has to be given to us but merit that has to be given to G-d.

    When we say that it is G-d that has saved us, we do not say that we have not done anything. We have not crossed our arms and expected our enemies to fade but have fought against them (sometimes with little effect, such as the Jewish rebels who hid under, yes under, Jerusalem during Roman occupation, and other times with great effects such as against the Kingdom of Mordechai, which we ended victorious) and still stand today. It is with G-d’s help that we have won. If it would not have been for His help, we would not be here today. G-d sees our efforts and rewards us or our children or the children of our children. Same goes with the good deeds, and the bad deeds.

    I thank you for your sympathy for Israel. It is indeed hard to find such these days (You should come around school and hear what some have to say – That the Israelis are claiming there land because of the Nazi Holocaust when we are causing a Palestinian Genocide, that we kill terrorists when we should arrest them [get in contact with me and I’ll tell you the story, its frightening] and much much more).

    I respect your view. It is one of an atheist (no offense intended) and so the thought of a G-d saving the Jewish people and because texts given by G-d say you will have a piece of land then so you must have it is not completely viable for you. However, it is to the Jews who both created and live today in Israel. The ideas of a religiously inspired occupation and survival over the years and national sovereignty do not clash, but act as one. We were there first as you rightly pointed out. We hold not our primary objective to expel all non-Jews, but to co-exist with them, as we are doing, as much as the press would like to think otherwise. For the press, there are no Palestinians who wake up every morning and go to work with Israelis and for Israelis. That is the truth today. This links with the, as you described, revoltingly short-sighted view that all Palestinians are suicide bombers. But unfortunately those who are have the guns and power to kill those who just want peace.

    I am drifting off now.

    Good article. You forgot a second ‘f’ in ‘better off’ in the last sentence of the article.

  4. And, same way I do not think your view of G-d is nonsense, I would appreciate if you do not judge my view of G-d (unbashedly arrogant).

  5. Good article, thanks for posting it.

  6. LOL


  7. I cannot speak for every Rabbi in the world, but I can speak as a Jew. There are few Rabbi’s which “indulge in religiously inspired expansionism.” Myself, as a Jew, have learnt that our objective is not to expand the Jewish religion around the world (unlike Islam), but to expand morals and principles that come from the Torah!!!

    Torah and Genocide!!
    1. Genocide
    2. Exterminationswar
    3. Cannibalism
    4. Pedophily
    5. Monotheism+Fashism+Separatism+Phallophilism
    6. Slavery
    7. Racism
    8. Military Strategy
    9. War in Gaza ( Violence, Killing, Cruelty of Torah!!! )

  8. Jewish Religion is a german Nationalsozialism!!!
    Torah: Genocide+Racism!!!
    “…not to expand the Jewish religion around the world!!!”
    Really……….. AIPAC+SOCOM+NeoCon+Christ. Education+

  9. Myself, as a Jew, have learnt that our objective is not to expand the Jewish religion around the world (unlike Islam), but to expand morals and principles that come from the Torah. I am happy to say that we are accomplishing our goal, step by step, even if we once in a while take a step back when being expelled from our land.

    Genocide 3000 ago, Genocide today+Gaza!!!

    T O R A H ! ( Pedophily and rape )
    17 Now therefore, kill every male among the little ones, and kill every woman who has known man by lying with him. 18 But all the young girls who have not known man by lying with him, keep alive for yourselves.

    G e n o c i d e ! ! !
    “When the LORD your God brings you into the land which you are entering to take possession of it, and clears away many nations before you, the Hittites, the Gir’gashites, the Amorites, the Canaanites, the Per’izzites, the Hivites, and the Jeb’usites, seven nations greater and mightier than yourselves, 2 and when the LORD your God gives them over to you, and you defeat them; then you must utterly destroy them; you shall make no covenant with them, and show no mercy to them.”

    22 The LORD your God will clear away these nations before you little by little; you may not make an end of them at once, lest the wild beasts grow too numerous for you. 23 But the LORD your God will give them over to you, and throw them into great confusion, until they are destroyed. 24 And he will give their kings into your hand, and you shall make their name perish from under heaven; not a man shall be able to stand against you, until you have destroyed them.

    29 “When the LORD your God cuts off before you the nations whom you go in to dispossess, and you dispossess them and dwell in their land, 30 take heed that you be not ensnared to follow them, after they have been destroyed before you, and that you do not inquire about their gods, saying,

    1 “When the LORD your God cuts off the nations whose land the LORD your God gives you, and you dispossess them and dwell in their cities and in their houses, 2 you shall set apart three cities for you in the land which the LORD your God gives you to possess.

  10. Moses und Hitler: Zwei Brüder
    Moses und Hitler haben vieles gemeinsam, sie hatten die gleichen Ideen und vollbrachten ähnliche Taten. Beide waren intensiv bestrebt, andere Völker auszurotten. Beide taten dies in erster Linie für die eigene Ideologie und um für das eigene Volk, das Land und die Güter der anderen Völker in Besitz zu nehmen. Bei Moses waren es die Amalekiter, Amoriter, Kanaaniter, Hethiter, Pheresiter, Heviter und Jebusiter, Midianiter und noch manche mehr, die ausgerottet wurden oder ausgerottet werden sollten. Bei Hitler waren es hauptsächlich die Juden, Roma, Sinti und viele Slawen. Moses hat sich auf seinen Gott Jahwe berufen, Hitler auf die Vorsehung. Beide angerufenen überweltlichen Autoritäten hatten nicht nur nichts gegen die Völkermorde einzuwenden; im Gegenteil, diese Genozide wurden im Interesse der auserwählten Volksgruppen der Juden und der Arier von den göttlichen Autoritäten gebilligt bzw. angeordnet. Im vierten Buch Moses, Kapitel 31 heisst es beispielsweise über das Volk der Midianiter: „Und sie (Israeliten) führten das Heer wider die Midianiter, wie der Herr dem Moses geboten hatte, und erwürgten alles, was männlich war.“ Und etwas weiter: „Und die Kinder Israel nahmen gefangen die Weiber der Midianiter und ihre Kinder; all ihr Vieh, alle ihre Habe und alle ihre Güter raubten sie, und verbrannten mit Feuer alle ihre Städte. Und nahmen allen Raub und alles, was zu nehmen war, Menschen und Vieh.“ Aber etwas später heisst es: „Moses ward zornig über die Hauptleute des Heeres und sprach zu ihnen: Warum habt ihr alle Weiber leben lassen?“ So mussten sie die Frauen auch umbringen. Manchmal wurden den Israeliten bezüglich Frauen Ausnahmen gestattet, so dass sie die noch jungfräulichen Mädchen nicht umbringen mussten, sondern sie für sich behalten und benutzen durften. Joshua, Gehilfe und Nachfolger des Moses, hat den Genozid ebenso gründlich gelernt und ausgeübt.

    Aus der Nazi-Schreckensherrschaft ist uns bekannt, wie Familien auseinander gerissen und zerstört wurden. Die genau gleichen Grausamkeiten werden im 4. Buch Moses in aller Ausführlichkeit geschildert, nämlich wie die nichtjüdischen Frauen ausgestossen werden mussten, auch wenn sie Kinder hatten oder schwanger waren. Es heisst: Das Volk Israel und die Priester und Leviten sind nicht abgesondert von den Völkern in den Ländern… nämlich die Kanaaniter, Hethiter, Pheresiter, Jebusiter, Ammoniter, Moabiter, Ägypter und Amoriter; denn sie haben deren Töchter genommen für sich und ihre Söhne und den heiligen Samen gemein gemacht mit diesen Völkern. Wohl in keiner schriftlichen Überlieferung wird die Reinheit des Blutes bzw. der Rasse und der Religion fanatischer vertreten und verfolgt als im alten Testament Die Begründung: Gott habe die Kinder Israel als sein Volk erwählt und werde sie über alle Völker auf Erden erheben. Diese Ideologie der Einzigartigkeit und Auserwähltheit mit ihren unabsehbar schrecklichen Folgen hat im Nazireich grausamste Auferstehung und praktische Umsetzung erfahren. Doch niemand soll aus diesen Ausführungen neue Begründungen für Antisemitismus ziehen. Diese Ideologie der Auserwähltheit ist nämlich gleichermassen im Christentum weiter verfolgt worden. Bei Lukas 6 heisst es: „Nicht ihr habt mich erwählt, sondern ich habe euch erwählt”. Und bei Matthäus wird Jesus zitiert: „Viele sind berufen, aber wenige sind auserwählt” und er soll gesagt haben, er komme zurück um seine „Auserwählten” zu sammeln. Die gleiche Ideologie findet sich von den Aposteln bis zum heutigen Papst; bei den evangelikalen Amerikanern wie bei den jüdischen Siedlern und den israelischen Rechtsparteien und ebenso bei den Islamisten, welche die ganze Welt unter die Herrschaft ihres gewalttätigen Allah bringen wollen. Warum zählen diese Moses-Bücher mit den schrecklichen Holocaust-Geschichten immer noch zu den heiligen Büchern im Judentum, im Christentum und offenbar auch im Islam? Wäre es nicht an der Zeit, diese Bücher als das zu bezeichnen, was sie tatsächlich sind: Anleitungen zu Holocaust-Ideologien und Quelle nicht endender religiös und ideologisch motivierter Kämpfe und Vernichtungsfeldzüge? Wem es gelingt, sich von der Idee des durch Gott speziellen Auserwähltseins gegenüber den meisten anderen Menschen zu lösen, der leistet einen kaum zu überschätzenden Beitrag zur Spiritualität und zum Frieden in der Welt.

    Franz Buggle: Denn sie wissen nicht, was sie glauben – Oder warum man redlicherweise nicht mehr Christ sein kann
    Kann man sich – als Basis und höchste Instanz aller christlichen Religiosität und Moral – auf die Bibel stützen und dabei intellektuell redlich bleiben, konsequent denken, ethisch human handeln? Nein, das kann man nicht! Zu diesem Schluß kommt der Autor in seinem sachlich-beharrlich argumentierenden Buch, das allgemein akzeptierte theologische Sprechblasen zum Platzen bringt. Was veranlaßt Franz Buggle, Professor für Psychologie an der Universität Freiburg, dazu, ein gründliches bibel- und christentumskritisches Buch vorzulegen? Ist nicht alles schon gesagt?

    „Es ist“, sagt Buggle, „ein ganzes Bündel von Motiven, die mich dieses Buch schreiben ließen. Da ist zunächst die weitverbreitete Unsicherheit in religiösen Fragen, das konflikthafte Schwanken zwischen Annahme und Ablehnung der von den Kirchen verkündeten Lehren bei sehr vielen Menschen, begleitet von einer immer wieder mit Staunen festzustellenden und kaum glaublichen Desinformation über religiöse Inhalte und Lehren, wie sie in Bibel und kirchlicher Verkündigung enthalten sind. Im ersten Teil demonstriere ich durch Zitate, daß die Bibel, unsere ,Heilige Schrift‘, ,Gottes Wort‘, ein zutiefst gewalttätig-inhumanes Buch ist, völlig ungeeignet als Grundlage einer heute verantwortbaren Ethik. Nicht zuletzt habe ich dieses Buch auch als klinischer Psychologe in Gedanken gerade an die vielen Menschen geschrieben, wie sie mir immer wieder begegnen, die im Blick auf das Christentum in einer belastenden, nicht selten krankmachenden Orientierungsnot und Konflikthaftigkeit leben, weil ihnen die notwendigen Informationen für eine begründet-verantwortliche Entscheidung für oder gegen das Christentum, für oder gegen eine Kirchenzugehörigkeit fehlen…“

  11. Thank God! Someone with brains sepaks!


    Gott mit uns | Gospel of Reason

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