Wednesday, July 09, 2008

The Ultimate Appropriation

From Bar-Ilan University's Weekly Page on the weekly parsha, #764, parashat Balaq 5768, by Dr. ‘Amos Bar-Deia‘ of the Life Sciences faculty:

In discussing the figure of Bil‘am and his legacy in Jewish literature, Prof. Bar-Deia‘ says...


דמותו של בלעם נהפכת לאנטיכריסט הישראלי ומזוהה עם ישו ואף עם מוחמד.


The character of Balaam turned into the Israelite Antichrist, identified with Jesus and even with Muḥammad.

Whoa.
Talk about appropriating someone else's terminology and using it against them!

7 Comments:

Blogger rivkayael said...

Yeshaya Leibowitz also said the same thing in his book on the weekly parasha. He cites some midrashim, but doesn't footnote. Raises some questions on what they think on authorship of the sefer ;).

7/09/2008 5:27 PM  
Blogger rivkayael said...

My comment was slightly not clear--Y. Leibowitz said that the midrashic construction of Balak was created from Jesus and/or Muhammad.

7/09/2008 6:19 PM  
Blogger Aharon said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

7/10/2008 3:18 PM  
Blogger Aharon said...

You mean that the midrashic construction of *Bil'am* (a non-Jewish prophet) was used as a polemic against Islam. (Both Muhammad and Jesus are prophets according to Islam). If this was indeed the motivation of the midrashic authors, then the use of the term "Antichrist" is misapplied and confusing because Jesus/Bil'am -> Antichrist would be a reading of the midrash as a polemic against Christianity.

7/10/2008 3:27 PM  
Blogger Steg (dos iz nit der šteg) said...

rivkayael:

ah, interesting!

aharon:

i don't think it was meant particularly against Islam. i think it's the idea of Bil‘am as a Non-Jewish Prophet which got associated independently with each of Jesus and Muhammad, as the founders of other religions. Bil‘am then gets demonized and seen as some kind of ultimate adversarial evil, i.e. an Antichrist figure, in representation of the founders of the religions whose followers at various times persecuted Jews.

7/10/2008 3:34 PM  
Anonymous Mar Gavriel said...

And yet, interestingly, you yourself adopt the demonic view of Bil‘åm, in your more recent post.

7/14/2008 11:06 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Nike air force sale store.
air force 1 high sale online sale!
air force 1 low sale online sale!
air force 1 high womens online sale!
Nike air force livestrong online sale!


cheap air force ones shoes for sale.
air force 1 high sale online sale!
air force 1 low sale online sale!
air force 1 high womens online sale!
Nike air force livestrong online sale!



Nike air force 1 sale online sale!
air force 1 cheap online sale!
air force 1 livestrong online sale!
cheap air force 1 low online sale!
womens air force 1 online sale!

12/09/2011 3:34 AM  

Post a Comment

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home