It is ironic that the article I am going to talk about and the reference I will be using both feature heavily on Judaism. The irony did not dawn on me until I sat down and began this write this but I find it strangely satisfying considering Judaism's propensity for living on the outside(whether willingly or not). The article in question is this:

In short, the article details the life of a Jewish Hasidic community in Britain. Particular described are the myriad rules that govern their lives and which seem completely at odds with what we would consider to be normal - even acceptable - laws. It is as if these people have managed to create a nation within a nation, separate yet a part of the greater whole. This is where I do make one distinction should anyone accuse me of seeing links where none exist. The article does not explicitly say whether this community is subject to the laws of Britain or not, nor does it say whether these people enjoy the same rights enjoyed by proper British citizens. This is important since the work that came to mind when I read this was On The Jewish Question, which deals with groups that demand rights for themselves that are separate from those who they claim to be a part of. 

My point is this: communities such as the aforementioned Hasidic one(with the caveat i mentioned earlier) seem to not understand that they are not an isolated outpost in an empty ocean. They are but a part of a greater whole which does not see them as outsiders. 

What does this mean? This means that isolated communities should not try to have the best of both worlds. They cannot be both Jewish citizens and British citizens; they are mutually exclusive when it comes to rights. One is an egoistic being while the other is a species-being. The rights of one do not encompass the rights of the other. In order for the egoistic being to receive all the rights and protections that the species-being would have he would have to ditch his cape of solitude and don the cape of inclusiveness. How can you or I claim to be a part of group A when we demand that group B has its own special laws and rights? This is a classic case of having your cake and eating it.

This may seem a trivial thing to some but look at it from a sociological point of view. What happens to a society when its members don't view themselves as part of the whole but as part of smaller communities which have nothing in common with others? How can a state be a nation when the people that compose it are not of the same creed, religion, value-system, or even hopes? A nation is only as strong as the values that bind everyone. And as soon as those binds begin to fray and form separate values then that's when the nation dissolves.


10/18/2013 00:44

Your blog template was so nice I decided to make a Weebly account too.


Leave a Reply.