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March 08, 2010



I'm having trouble finding an article claiming an actual genetic connection, aside from the members with the cohen type (that has also now been found to have other branches than a claimed Aharon/Moshe). Cohen of course is patrilineal, and detected from sons to son to sons - not daughters. this piece stam calls them Jews - and offers no evidence that they're any different from goyim with a Cohen grandfather;


Could you link to this BBC piece? That they do rituals that can be copied from Jews over the millenia or from reading Bibles from ancient to modern missionaries is not so striking.


On top of which the video linked is of a people from Uganda - and there's no reason to connect them aside from "blackness", and it would be considered racist to feature these children as connected to the Lemba discussion simply because they are both black. As well, the Abayudaya Jews have been converted in great numbers by American Conservative movement - even having rabbis from them. So it is even harder to connect them to historical judaism, let alone the Lemba.


The video was just an interesting illustration, no more. If we discount the Cohen gene as indicating only a paternal influence, what should we do with the mitochondrial evidence suggesting that Ashkenazi Jewry is descended from 4 women who had roots in Europe. It was common for men to settle in new areas and convert and marry local women.

None of this is Halchically determinative, just interesting.


You are right, it is interesting. Since missionaries distributed Bible around the globe with it's discussion of a comparably-tribal group with special connection to God - and especially since 1948 when this 'tribe' gained a modern state - all kinds of oppressed and minority peoples (let alone others, even colonial powers in the case of the Anglo-zionists), saw a cultural and spiritual "upgrade" in being considered with Jews. But the language used in describing such groups can become dangerously close to obscuring halachic categories, at times deliberately. Early surveys and question-asking among Hispanos in New Mexico to find evidence of "conversos" melded over time into vague 'rememberances' their children had that form the basis for new 'discoveries' among them. Genetic study of New Mexico Hispanos evidenced a certain strain from women descended from a certain family that was in common with Jews - certain ASHKENASIC women. And gene study of men indicated no more jewish presence than is had in Spain at large (which doesn't kosher spanish men, but DOES cast doubt on Jews separating themselves in "New Spain").

We should discount the paternal with the Lemba because it's paternal; the 4 ashkenasic women who have many descendants are not relevant as they gave birth to jews - the cohanim fathered non-jews. Perhaps in their first generation, there could have conceivably been conversation about the descendants status (debatable in this case since the fathers were Cohanim - not less-restricted 'Israel'), but that was long ago.

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