The End of Illusion

By Seidler-Feller, Chaim | Tikkun, January 1996 | Go to article overview

The End of Illusion


Seidler-Feller, Chaim, Tikkun


What follows is a measure of what I have learned in the aftermath of the assassination of Yitzhak Rabin.

First, the belief that "Jews don't do things like this" appears to have been an expression of hollow conceit. And the anguish that many Jewish leaders have expressed over the shattering of this notion strikes me as a denial of reality. In point of fact, Jews do do things like this] Because, in the context of the pursuit of nationalist, political aims where power is a critical ingredient, all varieties of violent acts are to be expected. Nationalist Jews will tend to behave like all other nationalists. Yehuda Halevi, the twelfth-century Spanish philosopher, himself a proto-nationalist, was very aware of this stinging truth. With great craft and integrity he has the Khazar king gently rebuke the rabbi by proclaiming, "If you had power, you too would kill] " (Kuzari, I:114) Indeed, Jews do have power and they do kill--even each other.

Second, some remarkable rabbis have engaged in an unprecedented process of soul-searching which they have taken public. Yet they avoided confronting the messianic ideology that provided the underpinning for the heinous murder of the Prime Minister. This failure to extend their self-criticism can be explained by the fact that messianism, in this post-Six-Day-War era, has emerged as the sole justification for religious Zionism. To challenge the messianic interpretation would thus be tantamount to calling the entire enterprise into question.

But the events of the past few months culminating in the assassination compel us to reconsider the wisdom of advocating an ideology driven by messianic aspirations. More often than not, the pursuit of a utopian messianic vision has pushed believers beyond sober consideration of cause and effect into a realm where only ends matter and the violation of basic moral norms is held to be legitimate. Rabin became the enemy because, by agreeing to trade "holy" land--whose conquest was viewed as a critical step in the unfolding messianic drama--for peace, he was precluding the advent and obstructing the process.

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

The End of Illusion
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.