This is my first article posted 29th of Adar, 5772 (Mars 23, 2012)
Welcome to the Meadow of Tzedaqyal. This is a compilation of texts that I have written about religion and other topics from fall of 2011 and forward. Also included at the end of this article, some curiosities and “unnecessary knowledge” about the creation of my first website in 1998. Some of my original articles from that time, has now been translated and added here for nostalgic reasons!
Some of my articles here on Tzedaqyal may have a strong content or otherwise can be offensive for sensitive readers. In that case, I have put a text above some articles. So, readers discretion is advised! Well aware that these are controversial topics, it is however not my intention to hurt or being mean. I will take up sensitive subjects from stories that people have told me or things that have happened to me. I would like to stress that this is NOT my private diary notes! These articles are dealing with topics that I believe are important in society; religion, biblical interpretations, sexuality, politics, research, human rights, racism, discrimination and more.
My texts also address different aspects of how theology and politics have been used throughout the ages to marginalize groups in society, and how these different ideologies have intended to restrict people’s freedoms and human rights. That may apply to the persecution of the Jews during the Middle Ages, to slavery and the outrageous attempt by Nazism to exterminate an entire ethnic group during World War II. Further on to discrimination of people with other skin colour and people of different ethnicity and persecution of gay and bisexual people in modern times. No intentions to put different groups against each other.
I believe that this was not the meaning in the beginning. One thing I like in the New Testament, is that Jesus many times talked about love as quoted in the book of John:
“This is My commandment, that you love one another, just as I have loved you.”
(John 15:12 NASB)
As well as this gentle but demanding prompt:
The second is like it, ‘YOU SHALL LOVE YOUR NEIGHBOR AS YOURSELF.’
(Matthew 22:39 NASB)
I love those words from Jesus, they are genuine and well-meant! I do also believe that Jesus was a historical person even if I have embraced Judaism, so we have a lot of wisdom, even in the Christian New Testament! Being predominantely a Jewish movement in the time of Jesus and his disciples, it pulled many Jews to the new movement because of its message of love and promises of the coming mashiach/messiah (a Jewish concept.) But soon it died out as a Jewish movement, when Jesus did not fulfill the prophecies as he promised to do, according to the Gospels.
Decades later, when Jesus appeared in a vision to Saul, a Jewish scribe, on a dusty road to Damascus, he “converted” to the new movement and gave it a new life, compiled the letters from the first disciples of Jesus and changed his name to Paul. That was the first steps to Christianity.
So, in my writings I will also give a small hint of how the Jewish Bible has been used in translations and interpretations, with preconceived ideas and verses taken out of context. I will show “prophecies” that have not been fulfilled and I will also show examples of fabricated Bible verses. I will also show examples what the Jewish scriptures say about the coming mashiach.
The scriptures are very valuable and can be a precept how to live clean and holy lives in all areas and can also be an inspiration in all walks of life. The scriptures are a collection of laws and other documents talking about the early history of the Jewish people, and must be read in that context.
I would like to empazise that I have nothing against religions as I am a believer myself. What I do question, however, are the interpretations from all sides.
Once again, we can not blame religion for all the misstakes done, but it is important that we do not forget our history. We must learn from it, so we do not repeat the errors made throughout the history, with wars, persecution, racism and oppression of various kinds. For if our generation forgets, the following generations will unequivocally repeat our mistakes. Now, some facts about the little Kingdom in northern Europe. Sweden has for a long time been in the lead in the work on democracy and human rights.
“In the end, we will remember not the words of our enemies, but the silence of our friends.”
(Martin Luther King Jr., The Trumpet of Conscience, 1967)
LAWS AND REGULATIONS – HUMAN RIGHTS
In Sweden, all people have the same legal rights and obligations. Same-sex marriage, for example, has been discussed all around the world. In Sweden, as well as in many other European countries, same-sex couples have the opportunity to marry, so they enjoy the same civil rights as everyone else. Same-sex marriages was and is not a threat to heterosexual relations, that will say, I have heard arguments that heterosexuals sometimes put the blame for their bad relationships on homosexual people.
After the storm from the trial of the Evangelical Christian preacher Åke Green in January 19, 2005, who held a “fire and brimstone” preaching against homosexuality, the freedom of churches to preach and Freedom of Speech have been much discussed both within the government, the Parliament, in the media as well as in the blogosphere on the Internet. This was only a way for mr. Green to try to see how far he could go in the debate. He was aware of the risks, of course, but he was a brave man and I also support what he did! If a sermon in the future becomes the subject of a lawsuit, it must be determined on a case by case basis. Of course, pastors and preachers are free to express themselves as they have always been.
All this in turn, led the authorities to discuss what is reasonable and not, what is considered offensive and what is Freedom of Speech with regard to what you may preach or not. That was followed by a series of measures and a thorough review of the laws.
The Office of the Equality Ombudsman was formed on 1 January 2009 when the four previous anti-discrimination ombudsmen were merged into a single body. The Equal Opportunities Ombudsman (JämO) dealt with gender-based discrimination, the Ombudsman against Ethnic Discrimination (DO) focused on discrimination related to ethnicity, religion or other belief, the Disability Ombudsman (HO) was responsible for combating discrimination relating to disability, and the Ombudsman against Discrimination because of Sexual Orientation (HomO) monitored compliance with the rules prohibiting discrimination due to a person’s sexual orientation.
This is perhaps a unique institution in civil rights!
The Authority’s task is in no way to check what they preach in the churches, the point is that the group of people who now have legal protection against discrimination and bullying for example in schools and workplaces, has been expanded. The main groups who are now enjoying legal rights to avoid discrimination and abusive treatment are as follows: heterosexuals, gays, bisexuals and transgender persons, people of different faith systems, people with different ethnicities and those among us who belong to the indigenous people; Jews, the Sami and the Roma people who for centuries were discriminated against and mistreated. They have suffered the same fate as the indigenous people of North America.
However, free speech is good, but there is a sharp boundary where free speech is in conflict with the law, and that is when religious, political or other ideologies with their voice or action, medias, audio or images, articles or distributed flyers incite against groups and individuals in society. Some time ago a group of Muslim immigrants were targeted to hateful flyers in southern Sweden, calling for genocide. This could be treated by our anti-discrimination act. Even though we have laws to follow, our personal responsibility for how we behave towards our fellow human beings can not be left to police, politicians, churches, organizations or policy makers to decide. With empathy and common sense, we can get far.
Further on, children’s rights in society have expanded so there are programmes to prevent and combat bullying in schools. A school that does not have an anti-bullying programme or have not solved problems of bullying, are forced to pay large sums in compensation to the victims. The same goes for workplaces. The police has together with authorities initiated new ways of discovering if a crime has been committed by the cause of hate and discrimination against a person because of ethnicity, gender or sexual orientation, so called hate crimes. That was not done before, as they earlier just saw the cause of wounds or death.
Finally, I think we have a pretty decent legislation that recognizes the churches and gives them freedom to preach from church pulpits.
INFORMATION ABOUT THE KINGDOM OF SWEDEN
Travellers can leave their phrase books at home when they go to Sweden. Most Swedes speak English.
Recognized minority languages are Sami (Lapp), Finnish, Meänkieli (Tornedalen Finnish), Yiddish, Romane/Romani Chib (a Roma language.)
Some facts about Sami
The first written document to mention the Sami is believed to date from 98 CE. This is when the Roman historical writer Tacitus, in his book ‘Germania,’ wrote about a people he called the Fenni: ‘They eat herbs, dress in animal skins and sleep on the ground. The only thing they trust are their arrows with bone tips. Men and women follow each other and support themselves on the same hunt’.
On Sami language
Finnish and Sami probably originate from a common protolanguage, early Finno-Sami. From this protolanguage, Finnish and Sami developed in separate directions around 1000 CE or earlier.
The Sami in northern Scandinavia became linguistically splintered due to the fact that they were nomads who moved along the river valleys and lake systems with their reindeer. Southern Sami, on the other hand, probably has a slightly different history. It may have its origins in an early migration from the south into the Scandinavian peninsula. The various Sami groups then met up again much later. One piece of evidence for this is said to be the fact that Southern Sami lacks consonant gradation, which is present in both Finnish and the other Sami dialects.
Some facts about Roma/Romani people
Roma have lived in Europe and in Sweden since the 16th century. Just as long as they have been subjected to discrimination, violence and oppression. Racism against Roma is known as antiziganism, and is based on the ancient ideas about ‘Gypsies’ looks and behaviors in a certain way. During World War II was murdered half a million Roma by the Nazis. And not so long ago, Swedish Roma were neither allowed to go to school, to vote or speak their own language.
The history of the Roma in the Nordic area is not fully known. Sweden has had a Romany population since the 16th century. In Stockholm’s Book of Meditation, clergyman Olai Petri described how a large company of Roma visited the city in 1512. He referred to them as Tater. Until about 100 years ago they were alternately referred to as tattare (a degrading grouping word for wandering vagrants, vagabonds, travellers, etc, often used contemptuously) or Gypsies. A great number of the Roma who originally reached Sweden were deported over the centuries to Finland, which used to be part of the Swedish empire.
On Romanes language
In 1999 Romanes became a minority language in Sweden.
Romanes has many different dialects. One of them are Kelderash. The Kelderash Romany people can talk to many other related Romany language groups, e g Louvari, Machowaya, Churari, Mashari, Tsolari and more. All of these dialects belongs to the Vlax-Romany language group, which means that the dialect have been developed in Wallachia, Moldavia and in Transylvania during several generations and that they were brought with them as they travelled to eastern Europe, America and other countries. The Vlax-Romany dialect, is the dialect that is spread the most, geographically seen, around the world.
MORE LINGUISTIC CURIOSITIES
Vocabulary (Southern Sami dialect)
Hi! – Buaregh!
How are you? – Guktie veasoeh?
Good morning! – Buerie aerede!
G’day! – Buerie biejjie!
God kväll! – Buerie iehkede!
Goodbye! – Nåå-nåå!
I haven’t seen you before – Im leah datnem aarebi vuajneme
Do you come here often? – Datne iktesth diekie vaadtsah?
I love you! – Manne datnem eahtsam!
Do you want to follow me home? – Sijhth mannem gåetide dåeriedidh?
Vocabulary in Roma
G’day – Latšo dives!
Good afternoon – Latsi pala dîves!
Thanks! – Pariker!
You’re welcome! (m) – Sasto aves! ( to a man)
You’re welcome! (f) – Sasti aves! (to a woman)
Nice to see you! – Mištho rakhjom tut!
I’m fine! – Tšichko sas!
Bye! – Achen Devlesa! (ec. “Stay with G-d”)
I love you! – Me hama tut!
Swedish language has inherited many words and expressions from the language Roma;
Mucka – be free from; originally used the last day of a military service, which in the past was mandatory
Lack – angry, despiteful
Beng – crazy, fruitloop (a derogatory expression about someone)
Lattjo – something funny, nice
Tjack – merchandise
Hispa – house; slang for mental hospital
Jiddra – making a lot of noice
Puffra – weapon, handgun
Ding – crazy
Tjej – girl, chick, young woman
Kis – guy, bloke, young man
…and another few hundred words.
What I also will mention here on Tzedaqyal, is the fact that holy Scriptures have been used in history to find support for many of the discriminatory and violent acts committed against groups in society. How can we overcome these catastrophic mistakes that has caused so much damage and misery throughout history? How can we avoid it to ever happen again?
It is said that when Hermann Göring, one of the Nazi leaders, were in prison awaiting trial at Nuremberg, he asked to speak to a priest. A chaplain Gerecke pays a pastoral visit to Göring the last day before he was to be executed for his war crimes (though he committed suicide just before by poisoning, probably smuggled in by a doctor.) They discussed the same theology again as they had done previous times. Göring protests: “Pastor, I do believe in God” and Göring confessed his sins to the priest, and was thus forgiven all his sins and was assured a place in heaven. While the people he sentenced to death in concentration camps; Jews, communists, homosexuals, black people, Slavs, Romani, disabled people and many more, may be lost forever. These are a dark chapters of human history.
I will be dealing with many topics here on the Meadow of Tzedaqyal, understanding that it is impossible to compare one human being by another. We are all unique spiritual beings with personal memory banks, experiences, gifts, talents and other traits that we will carry on to the other realm, and no one can ever be replaced by anyone. If we try to avoid using other people or political systems for our own purposes, if we can find a way to learn to see the Creator in each person, we have come a little closer to Ha’Shem.
Here are so my texts in these burning topics. They are by no means written in such a way to be perceived as scientific texts. For this, the texts are too personalized. Take them as a tremendous brain storming in order to provoke thoughts and reflections on what our place is in life; why am I here, where do I come from, where am I going? What happens after death, is everything black, empty and desolate, does an eternal purgatory in hell awaits us, or do I come back in a new body, living a new life through reincarnation?
Throughout my texts, I have consistently used the short form of the name of G-d in respect of His name. Sometimes I refer to Him as Ha’Shem. I urge you to pay respect while reading the words quoted from our Scriptures, so they are not used in a disrespectful and disparaging manner. Thank you and a warm, wonderful welcome to you, my dear reader!
💻 Here are some curiosities and “unnecessary knowledge” about the creation of my first website in 1998 here translated from Swedish from a 2002 edition.
“The website was published on the Internet the first time in April 1998. It started with a lecture in my school class in an education i Graphic Design that I attended between the years 1997-2000. Subsequently, it became a small printed matter of the material. From there the step was not far into becoming a website.
I have been in computers since 1990. My first computer at work was a Mac Classic with a 9” monochrome monitor. But my first own computer was a Philips PC, Intel 286 with Windows 3.0 and MS-DOS 4. For some reason, I could never get the crappy PC to work, but the Mac computer was just plug ‘n’ play! I have been working with radio, both in front of and behind the microphone, I have worked as a presenter, educator, web editor, web construcor, author and graphic designer as both a job and in the voluntary work in non-commercial associations.
In 1998 my website was published on SPRAY and at that time it only had one article; my first on racism! In the same year my website was transferred to BIP Net (the Swedish ‘Bottnia Internet Provider’) that went up in SPRAY in the year of 2000, by then supplemented with multiple pages. The website’s address was http://home.bip.net/joax/.
In 2000, my website was forwarded via Nameplanet and got the address http://www.jonathan.axelsson.as and my site was now called ‘Boy In The Moon©.’ The reason for this name is that we sometimes can feel quite lonesome and that only the moon can see our tears! The name is also the title of a song (‘Pojken på Månen’, 1995 EMI Svenska AB) written and performed by the Swedish singer Rikard Wolff. The boy in the moonlight is in this updated version included with the boy-in-moon logo in the top left corner of all my pages – this is my sign!
After that the technique on BIP Net had deteriorated and the forward-function on Nameplanet had been subjected to an annual fee, I moved the entire website in October 2002 to Fortunecity where it now is called ‘Hate Hurts.’
This website is made in “Claris Home Page” ver. 3.0 (released in January 1998). An easy and intuitive webside software. The software is now part of Apple Works and is owned by Apple.”
Final notes about my website’s last year, 2002. Back then, the name of my website, “Hate Hurts,” was actually a play with words since “HH” and “88” were frequently used by neo-Nazi websites as abbreviations of a Nazi greeting in German, which I do not want to mention here, but I guess you have figured out what it means.
© 2012 Jonathan Axelsson
אתר הבית של יונתן