This blog started out as a companion piece to my book, Musings from the Christian Left (excerpts of which can be found in the July 2004 link) and to support a planned radio show. Now, its simply a long term writing project from a Christian Left Libertarian perspective (meaning I often argue for liberty within the (Catholic) Church, rather than liberty because the church takes care of a conservative view of morality.

Friday, April 16, 2010

Where the Roma Come From

I was recently looking on the Famous Gypsies web page, when I found a link on the web ring to an article about the origins of the Roma people. Find it here. They artlice examines various origin myths of the Roma Sinti, who lived in Germany. It appears that, based on similar cultural markers, such as religious practice, the Rhoma people, though they exiled in India and Persia before, were originally exiles from the Northern Kingdom, Israel, who became Christians when India was evangelized in the first century. The Kulanu (All of Us) movement, who looks for lost tribes, has found many who remained in India and it seems they are begining to find us. It seems we have more in common with the Jews than the Holocaust.

If this link can be proven, then most of the lost tribes are, in fact, Rhoma people, and are mostly either practicing the traditional Rhoma faith or are Catholics. The question is, will this give us a right to return to our Northern Kingdom from our long diaspora? (And, yes, I use we, since one look at old family pictures shows to truth of the family stories that my father's family is Sinti). This, of course, ads a wrinkle to the whole question of the return of the lost tribes, since we don't practice Judaism (having no Levites in our midsts - indeed, we were exiled before there was such a thing as a synagogue). Indeed, the term Judaism excludes the other tribes by definition. This does not make us any less sons of Israel, however, with all the rights that pertain to that lineage, including the rights that come from suffering the holocaust under the Nazis. It is also likely that those left behind in the exile, some of whom are Israeli Arab and Palestinian, are also of our blood, and should be recognized with us as valued cousins of the Jews and sons of Israel (not Ishmael, as has been believed).

Just what the situation needed, more complications. Netenyahu will have a cow when he finds out. If this becomes generally known, we will have to be granted a right of return and Arabs and Palestinians will have to be granted the right to stay. Will most of us? The thought is attractive, especially for those who have not settled - and those are legion and under persecution in Europe to this day. If no one else, these should be allowed return from exile.

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