"Half" Jewish / "Part" Jewish
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25-10-2015, 06:43 AM
"Half" Jewish / "Part" Jewish
I've now heard TWO people at my work say they were half or part Jewish. Since I'm at work, I don't talk about religion, politics, etc. but I'm dying to know what this means. Anyone ever run into someone like this? What do they believe? Is it more of a...."I don't give a shit, my moms Jew, dads xtian. I don't think about it", type of thing? Or do they have specific beliefs?

You either buy it or you don't. It's not a heritage; like 25% Irish 35% Italian and 40% German lol ....so what do they mean by "half" Jewish?

"If you cannot explain it simply, you don't understand it enough" -Albert Einstein
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25-10-2015, 06:49 AM
RE: "Half" Jewish / "Part" Jewish
"Jewish" can refer either to a heritage or a religion. I think you'll hear the heritage version more than the religious in normal conversation. Many who hold a specific religious view will prepend it with the specifics.

Give me your argument in the form of a published paper, and then we can start to talk.
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25-10-2015, 06:59 AM
RE: "Half" Jewish / "Part" Jewish
^^^ what Haffy said.

Hitchens, Harris and Fry... all Jewish "on the side that counts."

Big Grin

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25-10-2015, 10:39 AM
"Half" Jewish / "Part" Jewish
So does the heritage derive from Jerusalem? Does that mean a Christian or Muslim from Jerusalem can also call him/herself Jewish?

"If you cannot explain it simply, you don't understand it enough" -Albert Einstein
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25-10-2015, 11:19 AM
RE: "Half" Jewish / "Part" Jewish
What the others said. In addition to a religion, there's a mix of culture and ethnicity to the term. Someone who calls themselves half-Jewish is usually speaking in an ethnic sense. In theory, the ethnicity follows a matrilineal line back to one of the many Jewish diasporas from Israel/Judea, and from there back to Abraham. A long-standing religion and cultural prohibition against intermarriage with gentiles supposedly kept the ethnicities distinct, though in practice this prohibition has been... less than completely successful.

(25-10-2015 10:39 AM)smileXsmileXsmile Wrote:  So does the heritage derive from Jerusalem? Does that mean a Christian or Muslim from Jerusalem can also call him/herself Jewish?

Hell, someone whose family has never in all of history left Japan can call themselves Jewish. There's nothing magic about the word that forces people to use it the "right" way.

But someone from a Jewish family or background (again, in the cultural/ethnic sense) that converted to either religion COULD call themselves, in a reasonably accurate sense, a Jewish Christian or a Jewish Muslim. But they'd probably have to follow it up with an explanation, and my guess is that most converts WOULDN'T do this because their conversion would have focused them on the religious aspect of being Jewish and that would be the aspect they had rejected.

So sayeth a half-Jewish atheist.
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25-10-2015, 11:42 AM
RE: "Half" Jewish / "Part" Jewish
I've heard some people claim to be half Jewish - because their father was.

From my understanding of it -- you're considered Jewish if your MOTHER was Jewish.

This is because we KNOW who your mother is. Your father? Only your mother knows for sure -- maybe...

.......................................

The difference between prayer and masturbation - is when a guy is through masturbating - he has something to show for his efforts.
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25-10-2015, 12:08 PM
RE: "Half" Jewish / "Part" Jewish
(25-10-2015 11:19 AM)Reltzik Wrote:  ...
So sayeth a half-Jewish atheist.

Cool. Mater or pater?

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25-10-2015, 12:22 PM
"Half" Jewish / "Part" Jewish
Very interesting. Is there any other cultural phenomena like that? Can someone be Christian in the cultural sense?

"If you cannot explain it simply, you don't understand it enough" -Albert Einstein
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25-10-2015, 12:30 PM (This post was last modified: 25-10-2015 12:33 PM by DLJ.)
RE: "Half" Jewish / "Part" Jewish
(25-10-2015 12:22 PM)smileXsmileXsmile Wrote:  Very interesting. Is there any other cultural phenomena like that? Can someone be Christian in the cultural sense?

I think that most christians are cultural christians. Even Richard Dawkins has called himself a cultural christian.

I prefer to call them cafeteria christians ... and mocktail muslims © etc.

But only the Jews have a blood-line thing going on so that culture / tradition / ethnicity are one and the same... except not ... because one of the 5 branches of Judaism is Humanist (i.e. Jewish atheist).

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25-10-2015, 01:59 PM
RE: "Half" Jewish / "Part" Jewish
(25-10-2015 12:08 PM)DLJ Wrote:  
(25-10-2015 11:19 AM)Reltzik Wrote:  ...
So sayeth a half-Jewish atheist.

Cool. Mater or pater?

Jewish mother. I am told that this is what both makes my Jewishness "official" and also lands me in psychotherapy.

On the other hand, I was one of those kids who got presents for both Hanukkah and Christmas (and both parents were atheists, so no awful worship service), so feel free to hate.
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