by steven Nadler
In February of 1927, the historian Joseph Klausner stood before an audience at Hebrew University in Jerusalem and delivered a lecture on the "Jewish character" of Baruch Spinoza's philosophy. As he neared the end of his talk, Klausner dropped the usual academic idiom and, with great passion, announced his intention to bring Spinoza, excommunicated in 1656 by the Portuguese-Jewish community in Amsterdam, back into the Jewish fold. "To Spinoza the Jew," he declared: "The ban is nullified! The sin of Judaism against you is removed and your offense against her atoned for. You are our brother! You are our brother! You are our brother!"
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