". . . [T]he
deepest layers of our being are determined by blood . .
". . . [T]he Jew is endowed
with greater motor than sensory faculties . . ."1b
"'Whatever in Christianity is
creative is not Christianity but Judaism . . . whatever in
Christianity is not Judaism is uncreative . . .'"1c
". . . [T]he
Jew's sense of time is much more strongly developed than
his sense of space . . ."1d
"We can have only a faint
inkling of the depth of the tragedy that befell Judaism at that
time [Bar-Kokhba's great rebellion]; the account of Jews sold
for the price of a horse in the marketplace of Hebron,
at the site of Abraham's terebinth, seems like a monstrous
". . . Marcion came to Rome
from Asia Minor, bringing with him his own Gospel as a kind of
spiritual contribution to the destruction of Israel. In his Gospel
he not only separated the Old from the New Testament and
the history of Christianity from the history of Israel, but he
also drew a line of demarcation between the Deities: on the one
side the God of Israel, who is also the creator of this
imperfect world and is himself imperfect, being only a just
God, and not a good God; on the other side, the
'alien,' unknown God who has no concern with this world, yet takes
pity on it and redeems it."1f
attitude of man is twofold in accordance with the two basic
words he can speak.
The basic words are not single words but word pairs.
One basic word is the word pair I-You.
The other basic word is the word pair I-It . . .
Thus the I of man is also twofold.
For the I of the basic word I-You is different from that of the
basic word I-It."2a
"Only he that funnels all the force of
the other into the doing of the one, absorbing into the
actualization of what was chosen the undiminished passion of what
was not chosen, only he that 'serves God with the evil
impulse,' decides -- and decides what happens.
Once one has understood this one also knows that precisely this
deserves to be called righteous: that which is set
right, toward which a man directs himself and for which he
decides; and if there were a devil he would not be the
one who decided against God but he that in all eternity did
The man to whom freedom is guaranteed does not feel
oppressed by causality. . . "2b
"That you need God more than anything,
you know at all times in your heart. But don't you know also that
God needs you -- in the fullness of his eternity, you? How
would man exist if God did not need him, and how would you exist?
You need God in order to be, and God needs you
-- for that which is the meaning of your life."2c
Italics in the original.
1 Martin Buber
(1878-1965). On Judaism.
Edited by Nahum N. Glatzer. Foreword by Rodger Kamenetz, 1995. Schoken Books Inc.,
York, NY: Random House, Inc., 1996.
a I. Judaism and the Jews, at 15.
b III. Renewal of Judaism, at 44.
c Ibid., at 47.
d Ibid., at 49.
e IV. The Spirit of the Orient and Judaism, at 71.
f The Later Addresses, 1939-1951: I. The Spirit of
Israel and the World Today, at 187.
Martin Buber. I and Thou.
Translation with a Prologue and Notes by Walter Kaufman.
Translation, Charles Scribner's Sons, 1970. Introduction, Walter
Kaufman, 1970. New York, NY: Touchstone, Simon & Schuster, 1996.
a First Part, at 53.
Part, at 101.
Part, at 130.