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Home :: Archive :: 2005 :: May ::
Failed Application
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 16.0915  Tuesday, 17 May 2005

[1]     From:   Joseph Egert <
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        Date:   Friday, 06 May 2005 17:10:14 +0000
        Subj:   Re: SHK 16.0879 Failed Application

[2]     From:   David Basch <
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        Date:   Friday, 06 May 2005 14:56:52 -0400
        Subj:   Re: SHK 16.0894 Failed Application

[3]     From:   Joseph Egert <
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        Date:   Saturday, 07 May 2005 18:20:33 +0000
        Subj:   Re: SHK 16.0879 Failed Application

[4]     From:   Steve Roth <
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        Date:   Monday, 16 May 2005 08:29:21 -0700
        Subj:   Re: SHK 16.0894 Failed Application


[1]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Joseph Egert <
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Date:           Friday, 06 May 2005 17:10:14 +0000
Subject: 16.0879 Failed Application
Comment:        Re: SHK 16.0879 Failed Application

Bill Arnold writes , "I cannot be held accountable for what I have not
written..."

My dear Arnold, I hold you accountable only for what you have written,
no more no less.

Bill Arnold continues, "Generally, in the Bible, reference to the
commandments are interpreted to be the ten commandments..."

Not so. The Bible itself refers to the ten as utterances, not
commandments (a label attached by later commentary).

Bill Arnold then states, "[Jesus] elevated this commandment [love of
neighbour]...to such a high standard, second only to His first
commandment [love of God]...was the doing of Jesus."

Once again, the elevated status of these two commandments was accepted
as a staple of Judaic culture for at least several centuries before
Jesus; they were included in mandatory prayers possibly since Sinai. The
sage Hillel, some 300 years before Jesus, believed they did encompass
(but not replace) the other commandments. In the Gospels, the learned
Jews of the day were testing Jesus (to them just another demagogic
peasant) to see if he knew this simple truism of the time. The Gospel
writers were overjoyed that he could go head to head with the learned
and pass their simple test.

Finally, Bill Arnold questions Saul's role in the matter.

By Saul I meant St. Paul, who indeed never met Jesus, yet defied him and
his brother James to de-Judaize the early Messianic sect by nullifying
the commandments Jesus himself observed. Paul's historic victory is
reflected in Portia's triumph over Shylock.

Regards,
Joe Egert

[2]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           David Basch <
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 >
Date:           Friday, 06 May 2005 14:56:52 -0400
Subject: 16.0894 Failed Application
Comment:        Re: SHK 16.0894 Failed Application

Jay Feldman queries as to how Shakespeare would have carried out his
life as a Jew, if he was a Jew. It is a good question.

Jay asks if he would have been circumcised. As I mentioned, the
particularistic Judaic content of Shakespeare's works is so strong that
I am convinced he came from a hidden, organized Jewish community.  In
that case, he would have been circumcised and would have had access to a
Jewish education, which judging by his acquaintance with Talmudic
materials, included a Talmudic education. I noted in one of my books how
he made a slightly disguised joke about circumcision. Was he calling
attention to his own circumcision?

Since being Jewish in England was a crime during the period of
Shakespeare's life, why would anyone expect that those in danger of
being discovered would leave clear records of their life in any other
form but the conventional? That is why it is not revelatory to merely
rely on wills, marriage, and birth records.

When you begin with the thesis I do and work backwards, many reported
facts on the poet's life take on new meaning, some of which I wrote
about in my books. For example, the pickings must have been scarce in
Stratford for a Jewish wife. Is that why William married a woman seven
years his senior, one of the few available Jewish women in town? In this
way he would have committed himself to his people and enabled a Jewish
girl to find a husband.

Some have alleged that his father John was a butcher in addition to his
other trades. Was he also a shochet, a ritual slaughterer of the animals
to make them kosher? There is even an early story about William who made
a speech before slaughtering animals in helping his father. Are these
speeches the dim memory of the blessings said before ritual slaughtering
of animals?

Another anecdote is of Shakespeare's not wishing to party it up with
neighbors and excused himself by pleading illness. Is that how the
Shakespeares kept to themselves?

Marchette Chute in her Shakespeare of London tells of Richard Field,
five years older than William, who left Stratford to go into the
printing business and printed scholarly books in English and in Hebrew.
That is an interesting skill for a local of Stratford. In London, the
poet lived near Richard and was lodged in the home of the Mountjoys, a
French, Hugonaut family. Since the mountain that is "the joy of all the
world" is Jerusalem as noted in one of the psalms, was this family
composed of secret Jews? He would have gotten his kosher meals.

London had its secret Jewish community and probably communities. The
poet would have found other Jews and had access to Jewish libraries and
news about Jewry worldwide.

No doubt, living an observant Jewish life would have been difficult but
this could have been done more or less and inconspicuously too.  After
all, the general practice for Englishmen was for everyone to wear hats
indoors and to wear beards. I was once in Iran during the time of the
Shah and visited with an Iranian Jew who was from a priestly family. He
said the full grace after meals, which he knew by heart. On the Jewish
sabbath, which was the first day of the week in Iran, he attended
prayers on Friday night and a 5 AM synagogue service on Saturday before
going off to work at his job. This could have been the kind of life
Shakespeare led, compromised but intact overall.

And why has not evidence of this surfaced through artifacts? As I report
in some of my books, he did indeed leave some artifacts, like his coat
of arms and some other things, more controversial, known among scholars.

And why would anyone expect any artifacts pointing to him to surface at
this late date? As the historical record about James Wilmot shows, who,
being so disturbed about what he had found 150 years after Shakespeare's
death, had what findings he had gleaned in the Stratford area,
destroyed, this would have been the fate of any other controversial
material about the poet that was revelatory in this way were this to
have emerged during the first three hundred years after the poet.

What remain as I have found are those esoteric traces that are built
into his work, needing the antennae of persons who share the religious
culture of the poet since he used this religious culture as the vehicle
for his communication.

The rewards of finding out about the origins of the poet is not ethnic
obsession. As a result, we find out about the mind of this great man and
the way such a genius thinks. We learn of his many devices that he used
for communication. For example, in the very sonnet he embedded his full
name (Sonnet 148) he also uses an equal letter skip code to cite his
name as w-i-l-l twice, an astounding low order probability as accident.
But what is more, we also learn the meaning of some of his most baffling
plays as well as the range of his contributions to the culture of the
land of his birth and to world culture.

David Basch

[3]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Joseph Egert <
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Date:           Saturday, 07 May 2005 18:20:33 +0000
Subject: 16.0879 Failed Application
Comment:        Re: SHK 16.0879 Failed Application

In my preceding post in this thread, I wrote, "The sage Hillel, some 300
years before Jesus, believed..." Hillel was in fact a contemporary of
Jesus. My apologies for the error.


Joe Egert

[4]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Steve Roth <
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 >
Date:           Monday, 16 May 2005 08:29:21 -0700
Subject: 16.0894 Failed Application
Comment:        Re: SHK 16.0894 Failed Application

 >If one doesn't play the game, then one cannot lose the game. If the game
 >is to look squarely at evidence to see where it leads, then if one
 >doesn't confront the evidence then the game is not being played and it
 >cannot be lost. But it cannot be won either.

Sometimes, though, as in the case of scientists refusing to argue with
creationists and "intelligent design" advocates before the Kansas School
Board, playing the game is pointless because one side is incapable of
even grasping when the rules are being broken, egregiously. _See also_
Antistratfordianism, Roswellianism.

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