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Updated: 2021.02.15 


Though Orthodox rabbis today still call their ordination סמיכה, from at least the time of the first of the Sho•phᵊt•im, סמיכה is multiply disconnected through the ages. not equivalent to, and doesn't confer the same authority. Today's rabbinic סמיכה no longer even involves "laying on of hands"!

c BCE 1540

Ta•lᵊmud declares that even genealogical continuity, once mixed-up, can never be "unmixed-up." (Ma•sëkët Qi•dush•in 70b). Scripture documents that, from the death of Yᵊho•shua Bin-Nun c. BCE 1540, Israel immediately went into chaos for 40 years where everyone did as they pleased. For 8 years, Israel was ruled by Assyria, under imposed Assyrian assimilation.

סמיכה Of Qâr•bân•ōt in both the Mi•shᵊkân First Disconnection

No continuous סמיכה can be documented even from the inception of the Mi•shᵊkân – losing custody of the A•ron ha-Bᵊrit a couple of times – to the Beit ha-Mi•qᵊdâsh -Rish•on, separated by 6 centuries!

סמיכה Of Ordination First Disconnection

Just one false link breaks and invalidates the entire assumed – fabricated – chain. Yet, from the very first Shō•pheit, every link after Yᵊho•shua Bin-Nun is riddled with countless contradictions of archeological hard evidence and contra-historical assumptions. Not one of the claimed segments are, in fact, even internally as connected, much less seamless, as rabbis have claimed, based nakedly on preconceived beliefs, assumed as axiomatic, and wishful thinking.

No continuous סמיכה from Yᵊho•shua Bin-Nun even reached the first Sho•pheit! Nor is there any documentation of continuous סמיכה from one Sho•pheit to the next; nor to the first Nâ•vi, nor from every Nâ•vi to the other; nor to Shᵊmu•eil ha-Nâ•vi and Dâ•wid ha-Mëlëkh c BCE 1075.

Apparently, when the Church felt compelled to rewrite history to corroborate Christianity by fabricating a fictional origin and succession of popes, Jews then felt compelled to defend their traditions by fabricating a competing, but no less fictitious, continuous chain of succession of סמיכה from Mōsh•ëh to themselves. Thus, in preempting the Church, they claimed to arrogate (i.e. usurp) Mōsh•ëh's authority.

As a result, power-addicted rabbis since have had the khu•tzᵊp•âh to contradict both Ta•na"kh and the historical record. Yet, both Ta•na"kh and the historical record concur in demonstrating, ad nauseum, repeated fabricated glosses that merely give the illusion of a chain of continuity from the סמיכה of Mōsh•ëh to the סמיכה conferred by today's rabbis. In fact, a few leaders from each era, often unconnected to one another and separated by a generation or even a millennium, are glossed over and peddled as an assumed seamless, uninterrupted chain of סמיכה.

c BCE 722 Assyrian Exilic Rule & Assimilation

The Israelis (Northern 10 Tribes) were forcibly transferred en mass to eastern parts of then-Assyria (later Babylon, modern Iraq) where they were forcibly assimilated into the local population, their identity thereby blotted out and any סמיכה extinguished with them.

c BCE 586 Babylonian Exilic Rule & Assimilation

The exile of all Jewish leaders of importance, i.e. VIPs, from Yᵊru•shâ•layim to Bâ•vël resulted in nearly 50 years as subjugated exiles under imposed Babylonian assimilation. Ta•na"kh itself documents that, upon returning to Judaea, Babylonian returnees, products of their self-important Babylonian-assimilated Talmudic (later Gâ•ōnic) Academies, imposed their Babylonian assimilations in Judaea by authority of the Babylonian king: reforming to Babylonian month names and reformng the original spring New Year to the Babylonian autumnal New Year – Rōsh ha-Shân•âh – of Ma•rᵊdukh. This a•vōd•âh zâr•âh is yet another, even more absolute, discontinuity of סמיכה! From the time of the Babylonian-assimilated Talmudic Academies, סמיכה was conferred by every ordained teacher on his tal•mid•im. This tradition continues as rabbis today still regard these Scripture-contradicting, Babylonian-assimilated Talmudic Academies as absolute, Scripture-overriding, greater than י‑‑ה Authority – the pinnacle of "Jewish" learning from c BCE 589 to 1038 CE.

By the time the Beit ha-Mi•qᵊdâsh ha-Shein•i was completed, c BCE 516, the hiatus since the previous סמיכה spanned 70 years (BCE 586-16).

c BCE 175

The advent of the Hellenic era created new challenges, some to assimilate Hellenism and others to oppose assimilating Hellenism. This came to a head when Yәhō•shua Bën-Shim•ōn Jr. Bën-Tzâ•dōq ha-Kō•hein, by the authority of the Seleucid Satrap An•ti•ŏkh•ŏs ŏ Ëp•i•phan•eis, ousted his own brother, Yәkhōn•yâh Bën-Shim•ōn Jr. Bën-Tzâ•dōq ha-Kō•hein ha-Jâ•dōl as Kō•hein ha-Jâ•dōl, thereby delegitimizing both the thence-Hellenist "Temple" and the Kᵊhun•âh. These Hellenist priests became known as the Tzᵊdōq•im.

Until after the Hellenization of BCE 167, there were no rabbis (and, therefore, no ordinations of rabbis). So no ordination of any rabbi has ever been a valid sᵊmikh•ōt!!! Since there was yet another break in 135 CE, there's not even a valid neo-sᵊmikh•ōt of succession from Yavᵊn•ëh!

Despite all this, many delusionals ("believers") still persist in reciting a children's fable pretending there are no missing links (even while their rabbis recognize that all of today's so-called sᵊmikh•ōt are mere reform, faux-sᵊmikh•âh substitutes.

Millennia after the סמיכה of Mōsh•ëh, rabbinic tradition – begun by the very first Pᵊrush•im secession from the Biblical Kha•sid•im c BCE 135 – has fabricated glosses over countless historical gaps (disconnects) to string together a Christian-like myth that supposedly traces a supernatural coursing power conducted through סמיכה from Mōsh•ëh at Har Sin•ai to modern rabbis.

By an enormous logical fallacy, Babylonian-assimilated rabbis (or, perhaps, more recently, Dark Ages European-assimilated rabbis) wrongly interpreted that Mōsh•ëh – magically, superstitiously and supernaturally (i.e., divinely, idolatrously), by his hand (arrogating the exclusive Power of י‑‑ה), "apportioned" a part of Mōsh•ëh's spirit to Yᵊho•shua Bin-Nun. As a result, superstitious modern rabbinic סמיכה, worshiping Dark Ages European prayer incantations and supernatural magic amulets that pervert mᵊzuz•ōt and tᵊphil•in, are wrongly perceived as a supernatural course of rabbinic power derived from Mōsh•ëh (citing innumerable intermediaries, rather than directly from י‑‑ה).

To the contrary, the Scriptural account describes י‑‑ה's command to Mōsh•ëh to ascribe to Yᵊho•shua Bin-Nun מֵהוֹדְךָ  as Mōsh•ëh וַיְצַוֵּהוּ  Yᵊho•shua Bin-Nun as his successor fellow-servant of י‑‑ה (consider ibid. 27.20 with Dᵊvâr•im 34.9).

BCE 10 – 200 CE

"It was only during the Tanâ•im period, in the generation after Ribi Hi•leil, that [רבי] was employed as a title for the sages"exclusively of the Judaean Academies. (The title רַב was used exclusively for the Babylonian-assimilated "sages" of the Diaspora.) "The term [רבי equating to רִבִּי] was first used in reference to the rabbis of the Great (Judean) Συνέδριον during the first century C.E."

Post-135 CE

In Ërëtz Yi•sᵊr•â•eil, it also became necessary for the individual teacher having סמיכה to obtain the consent of the Nâ•si before conferring סמיכה on their tal•mid•im. סמיכה could only be granted by teachers residing in Ërëtz Yi•sᵊr•â•eil to tal•mid•im present in the Ërëtz Yi•sᵊr•â•eil at the time סמיכה was conferred upon them. On account of the high regard in which the patriarchs of Beit-Hi•leil were held subsequent to 20 C.E. when the Pᵊrush•im achieved predominance in the Beit-Din ha-Jâ•dol, no סמיכה was considered valid without the consent of the Nâ•si. The Nâ•si was, at first, permitted to confer it without consulting the Beit-Din ha-Jâ•dol. Later, the Nâ•si could only confer סמיכה with the affirmation of the Beit-Din ha-Jâ•dol. This סמיכה, alone, carried the title Ribi.

"After the *Bar-Kōkh Revolt (132–35 C.E.), the Roman emperor Hadrian attempted to end the spiritual authority still wielded by the Great (Judean) Συνέδριον, which had been shorn of all government support, by forbidding the granting of סמיכה to new scholars. It was declared that 'whoever performed an ordination should be put to death, and whoever received ordination should be put to death, the city in which the ordination took place demolished, and the boundaries wherein it had been performed uprooted'."   Hence, (the already multiply disconnected) סמיכה was displaced, yet again, by a new term introduced in Ërëtz Yi•sᵊr•â•eil: מִנּוּי – yet another disconnect. In Bâvël, however, the already multiply disconnected form of סמיכה, with the accompanying title Rav , was retained.

"The appellation of '[רַבִּי]' is therefore never used for the Babylonian Âmōr•âyim since they did not possess [Judaean] סמיכה, [ergo,] they have [instead] the title '[רַב]'. As a result, [and contrary to the later Babylonian-assimilated ōl•im ], the [early Babylonian] sages [in Exile acknowledged their] dependen[ce] upon their [Judaean] colleagues. 'We submit to them' was the Babylonian [Talmudic Academies'] attitude." 

Accordingly, it seems clear that, by 135 C.E., Ribi was no longer conferred, adopting a lesser sᵊmikh•âh and title of Rab•iꞋ , which was then Hellenized among the Romans – and Hellenist Jews – in Greek as ῥαββίrabbi.

By the 4th century CE, when the Καινής Διαθήκης was compiled, Hellenist Roman-occupier (gentile) Christians, lacking any awareness of the 1st century CE title, Ribi, assumed ῥαββί. Ergo, if the language in Mt. 23.7 "probably reflects the fact of its recent introduction," then the 4th century codices point to a later degradation of sᵊmikh•âh and titles from Ribi to ῥαββί. 135 CE, the birth year of Ribi Yᵊhūdâh ha-Nâ•si – the most likely year for this degradation – is, yet again, found to be a pivotal year.

5th Century CE — Ta•lᵊmud Compiled

When used to specify a person in Ta•lᵊmud (e.g., "One day, רבי  went…," or "a servant in רבי's house…" and the like), רבי refers to רבי (Ribi) Yᵊhūdâh ha-Nâ•si (135-219 CE). This should not be confused with רַב, which, when used to specify a person in Ta•lᵊmud, refers to a ta•lᵊmid who received sᵊmikh•âh from one of the Babylonian-assimilated Talmudic Academies in the Exile (Diaspora).

By the 5th century CE, when Ta•lᵊmud was compiled, the distinction between Ribi and Rabi had been deliberately blurred by the Babylonian returnees who wielded the authority of the Babylonian king (e.g., displacing Biblical month names with Babylonian-assimilated month names, the Biblical spring New Year with the Babylonian-assimilated autumn New Year of Ma•rᵊdukh, et al., and insisting that the Babylonian-assimilated sᵊmikh•âh of רַב – from which ῥαββί derived – was superior to the native Yᵊhūdâh sᵊmikh•âh of רִבִּי). With the primary exception of the Tei•mân•i community, the native Yᵊhūdâh tradition was lost.

Out of Dark Ages Europe

It was in the Dark Ages that "the rabbi" became–in addition to, or instead of, the interpreter and decisor of Ha•lâkh•âhꞋ –the teacher, preacher, and spiritual head of the Jewish congregation or community.

In modern usage the word "rabbi" in Hebrew has sometimes become the equivalent of "mister." Thus every Jew called up to the reading of the Tor•âh is invited to do so as "Rabbi So-and-So the son of Rabbi So-and-So," and for the rabbi as spiritual head the title ha-Rav is employed. (Jewish Virtual Library).

Variants like "Rebbe," etc. are modern European (German-Yiddish) assimilation innovations of Ash•kәnazꞋ im Kha•sid•imꞋ  or Qabâlist mystics lacking any historical authenticity and such titles are, therefore, to be shunned. (The Tor•âhꞋ  teachers called by these historically unauthentic titles may still be upright Rabân•imꞋ .)

In modern usage, by contrast, rabbinic titles "Rav" and "Rabbi" no longer indicate, as they did during the last couple of centuries of the Biblical era, that its bearer is thoroughly acquainted with Ta•na"kh Scripture (Tor•âh shë-bi•khᵊtâv). For centuries, the tunnel-visioned focus of rabbis on Ta•lᵊmud (Babylonian-assimilated rather than Judaean/​Yᵊru•sha•lᵊm•i at that) and more recent interpretations has produced an increasingly exclusivist, Ultra-Orthodox, elitist rabbinic caste blissfully ignorant of, occasionally even brazenly contradicting and overriding, Scripture. In Israel today, רַב denotes an Orthodox teacher of rabbinic rulings, while רַבִּי is generally the appellation for non-Orthodox leaders. See also the exclusively 1st century (pre-70) C.E. Ërëtz Yi•sᵊr•â•eil title of Ribi.

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