Friday, 12 July 2013

Israeli Chief Rabbinate Election

«First, the rabbinate. Israel has two chief rabbis, one Ashkenazi, the other Sephardi, elected for ten-year terms by a public council composed ostensibly (very ostensibly) of representatives of a wide swath of the public. How did this arrangement come to be?

The Chief Rabbinate was created in 1921, during the years of the British Mandate. Following established colonial practice and building on both the Ottoman system and traditional post-Napoleonic European practice, the British wanted a body to which they could farm out things like religion, charities and domestic relations. The Zionists wanted a respectable religious leadership to represent them in public and give religious sanction to their revolutionary enterprise.»
Mud-Slinging for the Sake of Heaven: Religion and Politics in Today's Israel - Yehudah Mirsky - The American Interest Magazine

Best Regards,

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