5 thoughts on “The Chief Rabbi Ephraim Mirvis

  1. A TftD worthy of the name.

    Shortly afterward, Justin Welby appeared on an appallingly deferential BBC Breakfast interview discussing the dreadful Covid death figures, and duly gave a stark reminder of the profound delusion, backward logic and mental contortions that characterise pretty much his every utterance.


    1. Agree with the others.

      Once in a while we do get something genuinely worthwhile and which does make us stop and reflect for a while.

      Then we get the ABofC as a counterbalance.

      I won’t comment on the rabbi’s words – they speak for themselves.

      The piece with the ABofC however was vacuous and self contradictory and almost an insult to the feelings of those who have suffered the loss of a loved one, friend or colleague. The bit about “speak quietly to a loving friend who won’t judge you”* was a bit rich given the usual strictures about the IMF (a very judgemental being by every account) — and what sort of friend do you need to ‘confess’ to ? And as for ‘walking in the light’ meaning ‘seeing things as they really are’ –we need a new, stronger word than irony** to cover this.

      Insight and delusion on the same morning !

      *from memory – may not be verbatim

      ** tungsteny 🙂 perhaps


  2. For once I don’t care whether there was a religious aspect to the thought. Genocide has been committed in the name of religious and secular societies and we need a day like this to remind us of the horrors that have occurred and could do so again.
    I had to stop listening to the pointless Welby interview and go and clean my teeth.


  3. Agree with the comments above. The only point I would add to the Chief Rabbi’s moving piece is that religious people can be both the victims and the perpetrators of genocide: for instance, the Uighurs and the Rohingya, both mentioned by Mirvis, as opposed to the Taliban and ISIS. All devout Muslims. Religion may or may not have something to do with genocide, but it sure doesn’t do much for the victims.

    As for Welby’s vacuous piece, the unworthy thought occurred to me that the biggest sacrifice that Canterbury Cathedral is having to make is not getting the £20 or so a head it charges visitors. Maybe Grumpy Giles has a point: why shouldn’t CofE churches make more of an effort to stay open for the faithful? Wee Nicola has managed it in Scotland.


  4. I cannot but agree wholeheartedly with the measured comments above, and indeed the Rabbi’s three minutes were thoughtful, moving, and thought provoking.

    I would like only to point out that, given the nature of this slot, we inevitably get a religious speaker’s view – and I must stress that I was quite comfortable with today’s Thought, nor would I deny that on occasion religious people can speak in an inclusive way, embracing the non religious. But what has become known as ‘The Holocaust,’ a term with religious overtones, encompasses not only the genocide of the Jews, but the deaths of over 3,300,000 Soviet Union POWs, and a still undefined number of European Roma (figures range from 200,000 to 1.5m). Add psychiatric patients, political prisoners and homosexuals and it becomes clear that a substantial portion of the victims of German ‘cleansing’ programmes were from groups not defined by a religion – the Soviet soldiers were simply ‘untermensch.’ Yet how could these groups be represented by a TFTD speaker – do the Roma have a faith leader? The Russian soldiers came from ostensibly secular states. Other groups may have included people of faith, but thousands of them were very likely atheist or agnostic. The Jews have the remarkably apt term “Shoah” for the Nazi genocide and its ramifications. It may be that a more inclusive term than Holocaust is needed to embrace all victims collectively, but realistically that is unlikely to change now. I only hope that when the Holocaust is taught in schools that – together with the terrible suffering and murder of six million Jews – the other victims of this maelstrom of slaughter are remembered too.


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