Would you pay $18 to help produce an immaculate cow? If so, Jerusalem’s Temple Institute, dedicated to doing “all in our limited power to bring about the building of the Holy Temple in our time,” has just the crowdfunding campaign for you: Launched earlier this month, it hopes to raise $125,000 in order to implant the frozen embryos of Red Angus cattle—a hardy breed popular everywhere from Australia to the American West—in Israeli cows, introducing the animals to the Holy Land in the hope that the herd soon produces an unblemished red heifer.
Such a creature—a Parah Aduma—plays a significant part in the ancient Jewish ritual of purification. The Mishnah devotes an entire treatise to the mystical animal, explaining precisely how it ought to be slaughtered—hyssop and silkworms play a central part—in order for its ashes to be mixed with spring water and sprinkled on the priest, making him spiritually clean. Should she materialize—not exactly a certainty, as the Mishnah teaches us mankind was only blessed with seven such animals throughout history, the first having been spotted by Moses himself—the red heifer would take us a few cloven-hoofed steps closer to redemption, making it a little bit easier to rebuild the Temple.
I am not an expert but I believe this conflicts with the New Testament requirements for bringing on Armageddon, so presumably Christian evangelicals will not be contributing their shekels, even if Mike Huckabee -- the most evangelical evangelical of them all -- was over in Israel collecting shekels himself the other day.
Nothing to do with cattle -- except maybe the Republian primary cattle calls -- but Huck did not impress the Guardian:
Mike Huckabee blunders his way through Israel press conference
I am puzzled by the silkworms. I thought they were introduced into the Middle East late.
I am even more puzzled that the Israeli government allows evangelicals into their country. This Armageddon they hope will happen soon will not be good for Jews. It won't be good for anybody, but especially not for Jews.
I urge you, even if you do not ordinarily click through to links, to click through to this one, and to note the button at top right asking for donations. This is what it says:
The cow is funny. The evangelicals are evil.