Let My People Know

Rabbi Adin Steinsaltz: “This feeling of distinctiveness.”

The attempts at assimilation over the course of history all boil down to the desire to negate this feeling of distinctiveness.

The German and French “members of the Mosaic religion” did not consciously intend to renounce their Judaism, but they tried to make this Judaism similar in its form and essence to other religions, to remove from Judaism its foreign character, and to put it into a framework that would conform to the conceptions of other nations.

This was and is the goal of all the attempts to westernize the Jewish People – to pour the Jewish content into vessels that have no aspect of distinctiveness or foreignness.

The fact that such attempts always end in the abandonment or distortion of content attests to how impossible these attempts are.

Not only is the existence of distinctive content vital to the Jewish People, but so are the distinctive and singular forms through which this content is conveyed.

Rabbi Adin Steinsaltz