Re: RELI: My secret is out

From: Eliezer S. Yudkowsky (
Date: Sun Jul 23 2000 - 23:25:00 MDT

Damien Broderick wrote:
> At 10:38 PM 23/07/00 EDT, Nadia wrote:
> >When they say they are Jewish they
> >mean the ethnicity, not the spiritual practice.
> >Like being African American or Native American. Is this a strange phenomenon?
> No, but IMO it's a rather oddly essentialist way of looking at it. Isn't
> this a bit like `When they say they are Christian they mean the ethnicity,
> not the spiritual practice'?

This is my own stand. Even after I rejected the beliefs, I used to
believe that the culture was a consequence of the beliefs, and that it
was meaningless - perhaps even perverted - to try and have the culture
without the beliefs. Nowadays, I simply no longer care; religions don't
have logic, they just happen. Even so, I would still claim not to be
Jewish, for the simple reason that I am not, de facto, part of that
culture. Not anymore. The State of Israel defines a Jew as anyone who
says "I am a Jew"; well, by that definition, I am a transhumanist.

--    Eliezer S. Yudkowsky

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