Sabbateans are Bektashis not Muslims

It is often claimed that the 100 000 Sabbateans of Turkey are a Jewish-Muslim hybrid community, yet nothing could be further from the truth as the Sabbateans practice both Bektashism (a denomination of core Median Judaism of the Northern Jurisdiction of Israel) and a form of Judaism of the Southern Jurisdiction of Judah. As such are the Sabbateans a unique human bridge between the Southern Jurisdiction of Judah and the Northern Jurisdiction of Israel. Nowadays the Sabbateans are highly assimilated into Turkish society and generally marry secular Turks and children of mixed marriages are typically converted to Sabbatean Judaism. The Sabbatean conversions fall under the authority of the Bektashi order as the Sabbatean Jews since the 17th century have been members of the Bektashi order and therefore also form part of the Northern Jurisdiction of Israel and no longer the Southern Jurisdiction of Judah. The Sabbateans are therefore Median Jews and no longer rabbinic Jews.

Published by Daniella Bartfeld

Daniella Bartfeld is the founding director of the Aliyah Organization.

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