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A Jewish Apostate

So last night I was at the monthly meeting of the Freethought Society and our President Margaret Downey was speaking about how she de-converted and got active in activism. Afterward, she invited others to briefly give their de-conversion tale. So when I was up, I talked about how I came from a mostly secularized Jewish tradition which celebrated the traditions and holidays but didn’t really take the religious stuff all that seriously. Here is my full de-conversion story. In any case, a few others who are still respectful of the Jewish tradition got up and started a Jewish culture love fest. I was really tempted to get up again and declare that I am in fact an Apostate to both the Jewish religion and the Jewish culture.

I didn’t want to be a Debbie Downer and some of the former Christians started to get up and praise the Christian traditions (such as Christmas) as a way to competing with the Jewish love fest. But I do want to make it clear that I do not support the Jewish religion any more than I support the Christian religion. Both religions are false and both if taken seriously are extremely dangerous (although Christianity is more dangerous in my opinion). The main difference is less people by percentage take the Jewish religion seriously. In America, there are very few Jews who take their religion anything close to serious (my cousin being one of the exceptions).

As for the Jewish culture, that too is mostly bullshit. Don’t get me wrong, there are a lot of positive aspects that Jewish culture teaches. When people are oppressed or discriminated against, mainstream and secular Jews are usually among the first to stand up for those being discriminated against or oppressed. This is largely because of our cultural experience with the Holocaust and the Jewish belief that we have always been discriminated against. That second part is not as true as the first.

The idea that Jews were once slaves in Egypt was drilled into my head throughout Hebrew School. This was said to be the “historical part” of the Bible. Even if you don’t accept the idea that God sent the plagues and Moses parted the Red Sea, culturally we still were taught to accept the historical fact that Jews were slaves in Egypt and we were always discriminated against. This however is a lie. The Jews were NEVER slaves in Egypt.

I also renounce the idea that we must remain pure through blood. As Aryan as that sounds, the religious part of the Jewish tradition teaches that the Jews are the chosen people of God through maternal bloodlines. Even those who reject this religious garbage are often indoctrinated through culture to marry within “the religion” and to distrust non-Jews to some extent.

So I no longer identify myself as Jewish religiously or culturally. I was both at one time, but now I am an Apostate to both.

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