Friday, October 09, 2015

"What therefore God hath joined together" - Tribal Judaists in China and India

The Imperial Palace Plaza, Tokyo

Tribal Judaists in China and India

Judaists or Hebrews once traveled from Persia to China through the Silk Road or from India to China by sea.
There is an oral tradition that the first Jews immigrated to China through Persia following the Roman Emperor Titus's capture of Jerusalem in 70 CE. A large number of Jews emigrated from Persia during the reign of Emperor Ming of Han (58-75 CE).[9] Writing in 1900, Father Joseph Brucker hypothesized that Jews came to China from India by a sea route during the Song dynasty between 960 and 1126. 
Put simply Judaists had lived in China for 1900 years till 1900.  But they are now extinct.  In contrast, Judaists are still active in India though their history in India.
P. M. Jussay wrote that it was believed that the earliest Jews in India were sailors from King Solomon's time.[18] It has been claimed that following the destruction of the First Temple in the Siege of Jerusalem of 587 BC, some Jewish exiles came to India.[19] Only after the destruction of the Second Temple in 70 CE are records found that attest to numerous Jewish settlers arriving at Cranganore, an ancient port near Cochin.
When India became independent of Britain in 1947 and Israel established itself as a nation in 1948 and with the heightened nationalism and emphasis in the Partition of India of Hindu and Muslim identities, most of Cochin's Jews emigrated from India. Generally they went to Israel (made aliyah). Many from the migrants joined the moshavim (agricultural settlements) of Nevatim, Shahar, Yuval, and Mesilat Zion.[13] Others settled in the neighbourhood of Katamon in Jerusalem, and in Beersheba, Ramla, Dimona and Yeruham, where many Bene Israel had settled.[55] Since the late 20th century, former Cochin Jews have also immigrated to the United States.
In Cochin, the Paradesi Synagogue is still active as a place of worship, but the Jewish community is very small. The building also attracts visitors as a historic tourist site. As of 2008, the ticket-seller at the synagogue, Yaheh Hallegua, is the last female Paradesi Jew of child-bearing age in the community.[56]
Accordingly, India looks closer to Palestine than China is.  Or, India belongs to the mainstream of the world stretching from Europe to the Middle East and South Asia.  But China belongs to a different world where Japan, Korea, Myanmar, Thailand, Vietnam, Tibet, Mongolia, and Korea  belong.

It also seems to show how mankind had spread after exit from Africa to South Asia (and Europe) 130,000 years ago and from Africa to East Asia 50,000 years ago, according to the latest research results.

But with strong religion of the tribe Judaism, those ancient Hebrews could not survive and multiply in China.  They could not even become an established ethnic and religious group in India, though still surviving there.

Indeed, the God seems to expect from people in East Asia something different from the peoples in the mainstream world living in regions from North Africa, Europe, the Middle East and South Asia.

But the role of the New World, Americas, should be pondered with or without taking into account Judaists.

**** **** ****

Mar 10:9 What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder.