QUESTION #7: Why is there Anti-Semitism?

By Rabbi Tully Bryks

Throughout history, philosophers and historians have wondered why the Jews have been hated for so long, by so many, and with such intensity – it even lead to attempts at complete extermination and annihilation.[1] Jews were expelled from over 100 countries![2] Amazingly, the various proposed “reasons” are really just excuses and rationalizations that often contradict one another. Here are some examples:

  • Some people have hated us for being communists,[3] while others have hated us for being capitalists.[4]
  • Some people have hated us for being poor,[5] while others have hated us for being rich.[6]
  • Some people have hated us for being an inferior race,[7] while others have hated us for being too influential, powerful, and dominating society.[8]
  • Some people have hated us for being different,[9] while others have hated us for trying to be the same.[10]

With so many contradictory “reasons” for Anti-Semitism, it should be clear that these are all merely excuses, and not the root cause. One of the most common excuses is that Jews just happen to be convenient scapegoats. But being a scapegoat doesn’t explain the cause of hatred – it is simply a good litmus test as to how much hatred is already there beneath the surface (often above the surface).

So why have the Jews been hated so much for so long?

The answer is that when G-d gave the Torah to the Jews at Mount Sinai, a great sinah (hatred) against the Jews was ingrained in immoral people.[11] On a subconscious level, an immoral person recognizes that the Jews brought G-d and morality into this world. As a result, they come to hate us and target us, although they may not even be fully aware of their real motives, which lie within their subconscious. Moral people, on the other hand, will want to connect with and support Jews, as they too understand subconsciously that we represent G-d’s morality in this world.

So the solution to Anti-Semitism is not for Jews to hide that they are Jewish nor is it to hide Jewish practice and worship. On the contrary, the more we follow our mandate to be a “Light unto the Nations”[12] and spread morality, the more moral the world will become. As the world becomes more moral, more people will subconsciously want to connect with and support Jews. This would create more love not only for Jews, but for all human beings – all of G-d’s children.

To learn more about Anti-Semitism, click on any of the items below:

Feldheim Book The Anti-Jewish Phenomenon


Artscroll Video From Majestic Peaks to Valley of Tears
 Artscroll Book Lieutenant Birnbaum

[1]  Megillas Esther (Book of Esther), 3:13; The Third Reich: A Concise History: pp. 180–2 (2007)

[3] The Jewish Community in British Politics. Clarendon Press, Oxford (1983) ; The Jewish Bolshevism, (1922 and 1923), Britons Publishing Society

[4] Anti-Semitism: A Historical Encyclopedia of Prejudice and Persecution, Volume 1. ABC-CLIO, p. 55; Perry, p 156 regarding Marx (2005)

[5] “The Columbia Guide to the Holocaust,” Columbia University Press, p. 215 (2003); Shylock’s children: Economics and Jewish identity in Modern Europe, University of California Press. p. 13

[6] “Jews & Money – The Story of a Stereotype” (Retrieved 2011); Shylock’s children: Economics and Jewish identity in Modern Europe, University of California Press, p. 13

[7]Anti-Semitism: A Very Short Introduction: pp. 57–9 (2007)

[8] Creative Awakening: the Jewish Presence in Twentieth-Century American Literature, Greenwood Publishing Group, p. 76; Abraham Foxman, Page 93 (1987)

[9] Das Judenthum in der Musik (“Jewishness in Music”)

[10] Estatutos de Limpieza de Sangre, Pablo A. Chami.

[11] Talmud, Shabbos, 89A

[12] Yishayahu (Isaiah), 42:6 and 49:6

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  1. JEWS have been scapegoated out of jealousy, envy and from sources not understood by the hater. JEWS are the chosen tribe of the creator, Jews pay for this favor through jealous
    scapegoating by less evolved individuals. Just a brief comment from a non Jew person who would have fought for the jews as my parents did during WW2.

    • Rabbi Tully Bryks

      Thank you so much Dorothy for your thoughtful and inspiring. The Jewish people are indebted to your parents and I’m not surprised that they have successfully passed down their values to the next generation.
      Thank you again!

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