Tuesday, November 3, 2009

A tale of two Spinozas

It would appear that Yaakov (Jack) Teitel, wasn't such a "foreign element," "wild thorn" and "rotten apple" after all or, maybe, we have a whole barrel of rotten apples here. Anyway, it seems that Jackie boy had accomplices and today the Israeli police are q uestioning a certain Yosef Spinoza who is from the West Bank settlement outpost, Shvut Rachel, as Teitel. Anyway, I bet Yosef is especially glad that he is not an Arab today; the police released him after a few hours of questioning.

However, what is in a name? And I just had to think about that great free thinker, Baruch de Spinoza, whose ideas got him placed in a "cherem" (a sort of Jewish excommunication) by his local Jewish community in Amsterdam and put onto the Roman Catholic's Index Librorum Prohibitorum (List of Prohibited Books). Well maybe a few Rabbis in Israel will be rushing around to place Yosef Spinoza, along with his pal Jack  of course, in a "cherem". However, he is hardly going to find himself in exhaulted company of the sort enjoyed by his namesake Baruch in the 'Index Liborum Prohibitorum', which appears to be a sort of "who's, who" of free thinkers; Jean Paul Satre, Voltaire, Jean-Jaques Rousseau, David Hume, Rene Descartes, Francis Bacon, John Milton, John Locke, Galileo Galilei, are just a few of the too many to mention. Yes, the Vatican 'God Squad' like to do things big and the 'Index' is, indeed a big book. Of course, if we were too have a book for the tiny minded Yosefs and Jacks of this world, ..... well, that really would be a big book, wouldn't it and I am open to suggestions for my "Index of tiny minded bigots".

No comments: