Tody que es demasyadu no valle
The above title is a Sephardic, Spanish expression from the Middle Ages, which means : “All that is exaggerated is no good.”
Once I had dinner with a prominent medical doctor. Since I am interested in organizational health, I asked him to define health in one word, if he could.
He said: ”Moderation”.
“Berries are healthy, right? But if you eat only berries you will get sick,” he said.
Now think about it.
To be healthy, we need sleep, exercise and a proper diet.
Now let us exaggerate and over-exercise. Push it further, and then still further, and you can see how a person might become sick.
Same with sleep. Overdue it and you turn into an Oblomov, a fictitious character from 19th century Russian literature who spent most of his life in bed.
How about exaggerating with “the right food?”
Let us start with vegetarians. Now move to the next extreme and you have…vegans; men and women who are like vegetarians, but in addition refrain from eating any animal products, such as eggs and milk.
Push it to another level of exaggeration and you are suddenly in the land of the SOS Vegan, a vegetarian who (on top of animal products like milk and eggs) cuts sugar oil and salt from his diet.
What is next? The raw food enthusiasts who are like SOS Vegans, but will not cook anything, including their vegetables.
Now we are down to the raw food enthusiasts who refuse to eat tomatoes and eggplant because they are considered to be poisonous ( tomatoes in the middle ages were considered poisonous).
If you progress any further, you will wind up eating only berries and the next thing you know, you are anorexic.
In short, pursue health to the extreme and you will become sick.
The wisdom of the Sephardic Middle Ages has its own form of repercussion in politics, as well.
Take the concept of democracy. Free speech. Free political affiliation. Freedom of assembly. And, carried to an extreme, what can result? That an un-democratic party can gain power in democratic ways and destroy democracy. That is what Hitler did.
I believe that is what is happening in Europe today, specifically in the Scandinavian countries, and particularly in Sweden.
In the name of being anti-racist, the Swedish government has changed the constitution so that it is now illegal to have a single Swedish culture. Multiculturalism is now required; it’s the order of the day.
Sounds good. Very liberal. Humanistic.
But does it mean fanatic Islamists can flourish, protected by the constitution and slowly but surely change the country until there is only a single Islamic cultural?
I have a specific concern. The Scandinavians are chasing the Jews out. There are very few Jews left in Norway today, and the same thing is happening in France, where Jews feel increasingly threatened.
Why this phenomenon of moving to extremes?
I believe it is because people want a formula, do not want uncertainty, do not want to think and handle the uncertainty that comes with making a decision. As if saying: just tell me what to do, give me instructions so I do not have to think; (A) behavior. They do not use common sense.
Where is this coming from?
The rate of change.
The greater the rate of change, the greater the uncertainty, people need rules to guide them; to tell them how to behave. Simple rules. Simple directions which provide security and certainty, although when pushed to an extreme, it often leads to results that are opposite the ones intended.
Dr. Ichak Kalderon Adizes