2009
12.21

Religious status?

Here is a true story…

X is an Israeli man living abroad and he is married to Y, which is not an Israeli (not that there is anything wrong with that). Recently, X and Y had a daughter, denoted by z (she will be upgraded to Z once she grows up). X,Y (and naturally z) recently visited Israel and applied for an Israeli passport for z.

Now, according to Jewish law z is (of course) not Jewish, because Y is not Jewish, and Jewishness is an “illness” one can get only from the mother. So it goes. X is of course Jewish, but of the skeptical kind.

So, the Israeli interior office wrote in the new passport/id record for z, in the entry for religion that it is “not clear” [LO BAROR] (instead of Jewish or Christian, etc). They wrote the same thing for her nationality (i.e., race). X, which was amused by this, asked if they can also change his religion and nationality entries in his Israeli citizenship record to “not clear”, but they refused.

And so, the religion of Unclarity came into the world. It is not clear what its followers believe in, and more importantly why, but they are alive, active and recognized by the state of Israel…

  1. This story can not be true – there’s no entry for religion or race in the Israeli ID/Passport. There used to be an entry for “nationality” (the best translation I can think of of “le’oom”), but it’s been removed several years ago.

  2. The story is true. Whether or not they only use it in their database or it is printed on the ID/passport is irrelevant. I suggest you go the interior ministry and speak with them if you do not believe the story. In any case, I have “Jewish” clearly printed in my id card.

  3. This is unclear, so I believe it.

  4. Does their database list all possible religions? pagan? wiccan? pastafarian? I’d pay to see “pastafarian” printed on a passport.

  5. Re: the religion of Unclarity — probably a large group.