Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Respect for Holy Texts

Years ago (or so I am told) Hashomer Hatzair, the Socialist-Zionist Youth Movement used to have a pe’ula (activity) where they would discuss with the kids how the Tanach (Bible) has little or no meaning to them as they were not in any way religious.

They would then produce a box of matches and a Tanach and ask the kids to burn the Tanach. The kids would always instinctively refuse to desecrate a Holy Text in this way, which would lead to the real theme of the activity which was that even though they define themselves as non (or anti) Religious, The Tanach is still an important historical and cultural text which deserves our respect.

I’d be curious to know whether it would still be possible to run such an activity with the youth of Israel today. I fear that today’s youth may have lost even minimal respect for the Tanach (or other sacred texts).

Sadly this seams to be the case in Scotland (and I assume other countries) where an exhibit, proposed by the Metropolitan Community Church, designed to "reclaim the Bible as a sacred text" backfired.

Art Show Encourages People to Deface the Bible, Write Obscenities

A publicly funded exhibition is encouraging people to deface the Bible in the name of art — and visitors have responded with abuse and obscenity.

The show includes a video of a woman ripping pages from the Bible and stuffing them into her bra, knickers and mouth.

The open Bible is a central part of 'Made in God’s Image,' an exhibition at the Gallery of Modern Art in Glasgow. By the book is a container of pens and a notice saying: “If you feel you have been excluded from the Bible, please write your way back into it.”

The exhibit, Untitled 2009, was proposed by the Metropolitan Community Church, which said that the idea was to reclaim the Bible as a sacred text. But to the horror of many Christians, including the community church, visitors have daubed its pages with comments such as “This is all sexist pish, so disregard it all.” A contributor wrote on the first page of Genesis: “I am Bi, Female & Proud. I want no god who is disappointed in this.”

The Church of Scotland expressed concern, the Roman Catholic Church called the exhibit infantile, and a Christian lawyers’ group said that the exhibition was symptomatic of a broken and lawless society.

The exhibition has been created by the artists Anthony Schrag and David Malone, in association with organizations representing gay Christians and Muslims. Mr Schrag, the gallery’s artist in residence, said that he did not believe in God, but that his research for the show had underlined his respect for people of faith.

The community church, which celebrates “racial, cultural, linguistic, sexual, gender and theological diversity,” had suggested the “interactive” Bible and pens and Mr Schrag, 34, said he had been intrigued.

Source: Fox News
Further information: The Times of London

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