Jesus, President Obama & Bernie: The Messianic, American Politics, and a Sense of Humor

Another excellent post by Menachem Feuer, this one on Sanders, the messianic, and, of course, the schlemiel.

Schlemiel Theory

Unknown

Writing on the apostate Jewish Messiah, Sabbatai Zevi, Gershom Scholem argued that there are two kinds of messianic ideas: one is restorative and the other is apocalyptic. The latter idea is, for Scholem, the most dangerous because, in imagining the new world that will emerge when the messiah comes, it appeals to a sensibility that is desirous of miracles and things that are unimaginable.   It promises to, as Scholem puts it, destroy or radically alter the course of history.   In this sense,  it appeals to a sensibility that yearns for a violent conclusion to history, a revolutionary sensibility. Since it is so radical it will most likely, according to Scholem, lead to kind of nihilism. Scholem rightly points out that the Rabbis of the Talmud – and Moses Maimonides in particular – suppressed this idea because of its wild appeal to the imagination and its antinomian tendencies. Sabbatai Zevi and…

View original post 1,123 more words

About zjb

Zachary Braiterman is Professor of Religion in the Department of Religion at Syracuse University. His specialization is modern Jewish though and philosophical aesthetics. http://religion.syr.edu
This entry was posted in uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to Jesus, President Obama & Bernie: The Messianic, American Politics, and a Sense of Humor

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s