Tikkun: The word

|

Tikkun: The word, in Hebrew, means repair. In the Jewish tradition, particularly as amplified in Jewish mysticism, it means no less than redemption, renewal, salvation, a making right of whatever is fundamentally wrong. It's ironic that this word has been appropriated by an organization that epitomizes some of the elements that are most fundamentally wrong in our world today -- Jewish anti-Semitism combined with the inability of the starry-eyed left to let reality interfere with their visions of sugarplums, even when it costs lives. Even when it costs lots of lives.

Girded with its lofty, politically correct rhetoric, Tikkun, under the leadership of "Rabbi" Michael Lerner, has been promoting its left-wing, universalist, touchy-feely version of Judaism for over 15 years. The fundamental principles upon which the organization is based, according to its "core vision" statement, are:

  1. INTERDEPENDENCE AND ECOLOGICAL SANITY
  2. A NEW BOTTOM LINE IN OUR ECONOMIC AND SOCIAL INSTITUTIONS
  3. SUPPORTING THE STRUGGLES FOR SOCIAL JUSTICE AND PEACE
  4. PEACE, JUSTICE AND RECONCILIATION FOR ISRAEL AND PALESTINE and
  5. A SPIRITUAL MOVEMENT

To appreciate what these principles mean, you really have to go and read the voluminous commentary that explains each one. Here's a good example, though, of the application of Tikkun's principles to Jewish ritual. The following is an excerpt from the Tikkun Haggadah supplement, to be read by those whose consciousness has been correctly raised at their Passover Seder (the ritual meal at which Jews tell the story of and celebrate their liberation from slavery in Egypt):

MAROR (the Bitter Herbs): One of the most radical messages of the Torah is that cruelty is not destiny. Though we tend to treat others the way that we ourselves were treated, the message of Torah is that the chain of pain can be broken—that we do not have to pass on to others what was done to us. One of the most frequently repeated injunctions in Torah are variants on the command: “When you come into your land, do not oppress ‘the Other’ (the stranger), remember that you were ‘the Other’ in the land of Egypt.” In fact, the Torah goes further and makes it an absolute categorical command: “Thou shalt love ‘the Other.’” Jewish people today are systematically violating this command. We celebrate this Seder at a moment when the Jewish people are acting as oppressors to another people—the Palestinians.

For all intents and purposes, we are the Pharoah of today. Israel has occupied and dominated the lives of over two million people for the past thirty-five years (the longest such occupation in the post-World War II period by any country on earth except for China in Tibet). We totally oppose the violence used by the Palestinians in their struggle for liberation—just as we would critique the violence used by Jews like former Israeli Prime Ministers Menachem Begin and Yitzhak Shamir in the days when they led the terrorist Irgun organization against British rule......

And the passage later goes on to exhort the participants to political activism:

We need to change the whole dynamic in the Jewish world from a narrow chauvinism and ethos of “goyim-bashing” to a recognition that we are one part of the human race, that our wellbeing depends on the well-being of everyone on the planet, and that if this generation of Jews merely seeks to align itself with American power and contemptuously ignore the needs of the Palestinian people, that future generations will face the wrath of the world.

Well, you get the picture. But go check out the supplement for yourself. It's an eye-opener. Especially if you've been invited to a Seder, as I was some years ago, where this, um, material is suddenly introduced, and you're expected to participate in the reading.

The real reason for this lengthy introduction, however, is to note an interesting letter that "Rabbi" Lerner is apparently circulating among his following (and some others who are on his mailing list). It's about his recent meetings with unnamed (naturally) members of Congress. Among other points he makes, this one particularly caught my attention:

4. There may be more Members of Congress who would support this kind of stance, except that they are all certain that this would put their careers in jeopardy. This fear has increased since Jewish pro-Sharon forces managed to run another Black candidate against incumbent Congressman Hilliard and defeat him in a primary a few weeks ago.

The next such primary is that of [wait for it] Congresswoman Cynthia McKinney, from Georgia, because the same pro-Sharon forces have targeted this African American Democrat for defeat for her strong stance in favor of both Israel and Palestine. I was told by almost every Member of Congress to whom I spoke that people need to a. send money contributions to her re-election committee and to identify that they learned about this through The Tikkun Community and want to help. Equally important--b. some people need to physically go down there and help her campaign by volunteering time and energy to it. The election is in mid August, so the help is needed now. I was told that people who wanted to help in these ways should call her Congressional Office and from there be directed to her campaign staff--202 334 3121 and ask for the office of Congresswoman Cynthia McKinney of Georgia. If McKinney loses, it will be far more difficult to get others to take any risks.

(Emphasis mine.) For some time, now, Tikkun has been trekking further and further out on the lunatic fringe. At this point, they've fallen right off the edge.

About this Entry

This page contains a single entry by Lynn B. published on July 22, 2002 11:12 AM.

An open letter was the previous entry in this blog.

Update is the next entry in this blog.

Find recent content on the main index or look in the archives to find all content.

Monthly Archives

Pages

Powered by Movable Type 4.31-en