Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Building a Community of Trust

Here are the sources for the fourth week of Tzibburology, which I expect to teach Wednesday night at the BAYT.

We'll be discussing "Building a Community of Trust," looking at the Trust = Social Capital model of James Coleman, Francis Fukuyama and others, and how it is applied in Jewish law in community-building.

We'll look at issues of earning the trusted Chaver status, practicing trust-promoting behaviors, avoiding suspicion of wrongdoing and judging others favorably. Much of the material is traditional, but I have a few surprises in mind, particularly at the end.

The quotes in the beginning are long, but I really like them.

The Role of Trust in Building Society
1. Fukuyama, Social Capital and the Global Economy, Foreign Affairs (September/October 1995)
Conventional maps of the global economy divide the major players into three groups: the United States and its partners in the North American Free Trade Agreement, the European Union (EU), and East Asia, led by Japan but with the four dragons (South Korea, Taiwan, Hong Kong, and Singapore) and the People's Republic of China catching up rapidly. This three-pronged geography is said to correspond to major divisions in the approach to political economy: at one pole lie Japan and the newly industrialized Asian economies, which have relied heavily on state-centered industrial policies to guide their development, while at the other extreme lies the United States, with its commitment to free-market liberalism. Europe, with its extensive social welfare policies, lies somewhere in between.
This familiar map, while not wrong, is today not the most useful way of understanding global economic geography. The most striking difference among capitalist countries is their industrial structure. Germany, Japan, and the United States were quick to adopt the corporate form of organization as they industrialized in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, and today their economies are hosts to giant, professionally managed corporations like Siemens, Toyota, Ford, and Motorola. By contrast, the private sectors of France, Italy, and capitalist Chinese societies like Hong Kong, Taiwan, and the marketized parts of the People's Republic of China (PRC) are dominated by smaller, family-owned and -managed businesses. These societies have had much greater difficulties institutionalizing large-scale private corporations; their relatively small companies, while dynamic, tend to fall apart after a generation or two, whereupon the state is tempted to step in to make possible large-scale industry.
The reasons for these differences in industrial structure have less to do with level of development than with a key cultural characteristic, what the sociologist James Coleman has labeled social capital—that is, the component of human capital that allows members of a given society to trust one another and cooperate in the formation of new groups and associations... The competitiveness literature of the past decade has it wrong when it describes the United States and Japan as polar opposites with respect to individualism and group orientation. In fact, the strong historical propensity of Americans to form voluntary associations is quite similar to that of the Japanese, and it is no accident that these two societies pioneered the development first of the corporate form of business organization and later the smaller, decentralized network.
Virtually all economic activity, from running a laundry to building the latest-generation microprocessor, is carried out not by individuals but by organizations that require a high degree of social cooperation. As economists argue, the ability to form organizations depends on institutions like property rights, contracts, and a system of commercial law. But it also depends on a prior sense of moral community, that is, an unwritten set of ethical rules or norms that serve as the basis of social trust. Trust can dramatically reduce what economists call transaction costs—costs of negotiation, enforcement, and the like—and makes possible certain efficient forms of economic organization that
otherwise would be encumbered by extensive rules, contracts, litigation, and bureaucracy. Moral communities, as they are lived and experienced by their members, tend to be the product not of rational choice in the economists' sense ofthe term, but of nonrational habit.

2. Fukuyama, The Economics of Trust, National Review (August 14, 1995)
A nation’s well-being, as well as its ability to compete economically, is conditioned by a single, pervasive cultural characteristic: the level of trust inherent in the society.
Consider the following vignettes from twentieth-century economic life: During the oil crisis of the early 1970s, two automakers on opposite sides of the world, Mazda and Daimler-Benz, were both hit with declining sales and the prospect of bankruptcy. They were bailed out by a coalition of companies with which they had traditionally done business, led in each case by a large bank: Sumitomo Trust and the Deutsche Bank. In both cases, immediate profitability was sacrificed to save the institution…

3. Sosis, Does Religion Promote Trust? The Role of Signaling, Reputation and Punishment
[T]he conditions for intra-group trust are often not met in religious communities, especially isolationist and closed communities to which high levels of trust are typically ascribed. Rather, in such communities cooperation is maintained through institutional structures that effectively punish cheaters and enhance the value of an honest reputation. These groups gainfully facilitate collective action by offering a circumscribed social arena in which reputations can be built, evaluated, rewarded, and efficiently punished.
While face to face reciprocal relations obviate the need for trusting behavior within closed religious communities, when social groups are fluid religious practices and symbolic markers are successful at promoting trust among in-group members and anonymous coreligionists who reside in different communities. In addition, these religious badges of identity may be used by non-group members as signals of trustworthiness.

The Role of Trust in building Jewish society: Cases from Tanach
4. Masechet Derech Eretz, Perek Shalom 5
חזקיה אמר גדול הוא השלום, שבכל המסעות כתיב ויסעו ויחנו, נוסעין במחלוקת וחונין במחלוקת, ובזמן שבאו לסיני חנו חנייה אחת, ויחן שם ישראל, אמר הקדוש ברוך הוא הואיל ושנאו ישראל את המחלוקת ואהבו את השלום ונעשו חנייה אחת, עכשיו אתן להם את תורתי.
Chizkiyah said: Peace is great, for with each journey it was written, “And they travelled and they encamped,” traveling with division and camping with division, but when they came to Sinai they camped as one, “And Israel camped [singular].” Gd said: Since Israel hated division and loved peace and became one camp, I will now give them My Torah.

5. Rashi to Bereishit 11:19
וכי אי זו קשה, של דור המבול או של דור הפלגה, אלו לא פשטו יד בעיקר, ואלו פשטו יד בעיקר כביכול להלחם בו, ואלו נשטפו, ואלו לא נאבדו מן העולם. אלא שדור המבול היו גזלנים והיתה מריבה ביניהם לכך נאבדו, ואלו היו נוהגים אהבה וריעות ביניהם, שנאמר שפה אחת ודברים אחדים. למדת ששנוי המחלוקת וגדול השלום:
What is worse, that of the Flood generation or that of the Division generation? These did not reach out against Gd and these did reach out against Gd, as though they could war against Him, and yet these were drowned and these were not eliminated from the world! But the Flood generation were thieves and had quarrels among themselves and so they were eliminated, and these acted with love and friendship among themslves, as the Torah describes, “One tongue and many words.” We learn that division is hated and peace is great.

6. Kohelet 4:9-12
טובים השנים מן האחד אשר יש להם שכר טוב בעמלם: כי אם יפלו האחד יקים את חברו ואילו האחד שיפול ואין שני להקימו: גם אם ישכבו שנים וחם להם ולאחד איך יחם: ואם יתקפו האחד השנים יעמדו נגדו והחוט המשלש לא במהרה ינתק:
Two are better than one, for they have good reward for their struggle. Should they fall, one would pick up the other; if one would fall, he would have no second to pick him up. Also, if two would lie down they would be warm; how would one be warmed? And if one would be overcome in an attack, two would stand against him; and the tripled-corded thread will not quickly break.

The Role of Trust in building Jewish society: Halachah 1: Trusting those who honor Communal Standards
7. Responsa of Rashba 1:430
שאלת מי שהוא חשוד באחת מן העבירות שבתורה אם נאמן באיסורין אם לאו?
תשובה נאמן הוא בשאר האיסורין דהא קיי"ל בפר' קמא דחולין (דף ה') דמומר לדבר אחד לא הוי מומר לכל התורה. זולתי מומר לעבודה זרה ולחלל שבתות בפרהסיא דהוי כמומר לכל התורה.
You asked: May we trust a person who is suspected of a transgression regarding prohibitions, or not?
He is credible regarding other prohibitions, for we learn in Chullin 5a that one who is a mumar for one matter is not considered a mumar for the entire Torah, other than one who is a mumar for idolatry or violating Shabbat in public, who is considered like a mumar for the entire Torah.

8. Rambam, Mishneh Torah, Hilchot Maaser 10:2
ת"ח שמת והניח פירות אפילו כנסם באותו היום הרי הן בחזקת מתוקנין.
If a talmid chacham passes on and leaves behind produce, they may be assumed to have been tithed – even if they were collected only that day.

9. Mishnah, Sheviit 5:9
משאלת אשה לחברתה החשודה על השביעית נפה וכברה ורחיים ותנור אבל לא תבור ולא תטחן עמה אשת חבר... וכולן לא אמרו אלא מפני דרכי שלום ומחזיקין ידי נכרים בשביעית אבל לא ידי ישראל ושואלין בשלומן מפני דרכי שלום:
A woman may lend a sifter, sieve, mill or oven to her friend who is suspected of violating the laws of shemitah, but she may not sift or grind with her… All of this was said only for peaceful practices. One may grasp the hands of non-Jews in shemitah, but not the hands of Jews; one may ask after them, though, for peaceful practices.

10. Shulchan Aruch Orach Chaim 55:11
עבריין שעבר על גזירת הצבור או שעבר עבירה, אם לא נידוהו נמנה למנין עשרה.
A sinner who violated communal decrees or who violated a prohibition may be counted toward a minyan, unless he has been ex-communicated.

The Role of Trust in building Jewish society: Halachah 2: Implementing peaceful practices
11. Mishnah, Gittin 5:8
אלו דברים אמרו מפני דרכי שלום: כהן קורא ראשון ואחריו לוי ואחריו ישראל, מפני דרכי שלום; מערבין בבית ישן, מפני דרכי שלום...
The following are prescribed for the sake of peaceful practices: The Kohen should read first, then a Levi, and then a Yisrael, for peaceful practices. We set up the eruv meal in the established house, for peaceful practices…

12. Talmud, Taanit 14b
חברים אין שאילת שלום ביניהן, עמי הארץ ששואלין - מחזירין להם בשפה רפה ובכובד ראש.
Chaverim do not greet each other [on Tishah b'Av], but if amei ha’aretz greet us then we respond with a soft tongue and with solemnity.

13. Talmud, Gittin 61a
מפרנסים עניי נכרים עם עניי ישראל, ומבקרין חולי נכרים עם חולי ישראל, וקוברין מתי נכרים עם מתי ישראל, מפני דרכי שלום.
We support non-Jewish paupers with Jewish paupers, and we examine non-Jewish ill with Jewish ill, and we bury non-Jewish dead with Jewish dead, because of peaceful practices.

The Role of Trust in building Jewish society: Halachah 3: Avoiding suspicious practices
14. Talmud, Berachot 3a
מפני שלשה דברים אין נכנסין לחורבה: מפני חשד, מפני המפולת ומפני המזיקין.
There are three reasons why we do not enter a ruin: Suspicion, Collapse and Harmful forces.

15. Talmud, Shabbat 64b
אמר רב יהודה אמר רב: כל מקום שאסרו חכמים מפני מראית העין - אפילו בחדרי חדרים אסור.
Rav Yehudah said, citing Rav: Whenever the sages prohibited a practice because of appearances, it is prohibited even in rooms within rooms.

16. Rama to Yoreh Deah 87:3
ונהגו לעשות חלב משקדים ומניחים בה בשר עוף, הואיל ואינו רק מדרבנן. אבל בשר בהמה, יש להניח אצל החלב שקדים, משום מראית העין
People prepare almond milk and place poultry in it, since this would only be a rabbinic prohibition [even were the milk actually dairy]. For beef, though, one should leave nuts next to the milk, because of appearances.

The Role of Trust in building Jewish society: Halachah 4: Judging others favorably
17. Avot d’Rabbi Natan 8:7
מעשה בריבה אחת שנשבית והלכו אחריה שני חסידים לפדותה. נכנס אחד מהם לקובה של זונות כשיצא אמר לחבירו במה חשדתני. אמר שמא לידע בכמה דמים היא מהורהנת. א"ל העבודה כך היה. א"ל כשם שדנתני לכף זכות כך הקב"ה ידין אותך לכף זכות:
Once, a young girl was taken captive and two pious men went to redeem her. One of them entered a hut of zonot, and when he emerged he asked the other, “What did you suspect of me?”
The other replied, “Perhaps you entered to find out how much money they were demanding for her release.”
He said, “By the Avodah, so it was! And just as you judged me for the side of merit, so may Gd judge you for the side of merit.”

18. Yirmiyahu 40:14
ויאמרו אליו הידע תדע כי בעליס מלך בני עמון שלח את ישמעאל בן נתניה להכתך נפש ולא האמין להם גדליהו בן אחיקם:
And he said to him: Do you know that Balis, King of Amon, has sent Yishmael ben Netanyah to kill you?
And Gedaliah ben Achikam did not believe him.

19. Talmud, Niddah 61a
אמר רבא: האי לישנא בישא, אע"פ דלקבולי לא מבעי - מיחש ליה מבעי. הנהו בני גלילא דנפק עלייהו קלא דקטול נפשא, אתו לקמיה דרבי טרפון, אמרו ליה: לטמרינן מר! אמר להו: היכי נעביד? אי לא אטמרינכו - חזו יתייכו, אטמרינכו - הא אמור רבנן האי לישנא בישא, אע"ג דלקבולי לא מבעי - מיחש ליה מבעי, זילו אתון טמרו נפשייכו.
Rava said: Although one may not accept evil speech, one must be concerned for it.
Word spread that certain Galileans had killed someone; they came to R’ Tarfon and asked him, “Master, hide us!” He said to them, “What should I do? If I don’t hide you, they will find you. If I hide you – the sages say that although one may not accept evil speech, one must be concerned for it! Rather, go hide yourselves.”

20. Talmud, Shabbat 97a
אמר ריש לקיש: החושד בכשרים לוקה בגופו, דכתיב והן לא יאמינו לי וגו', וגליא קמי קודשא בריך הוא דמהימני ישראל. אמר לו: הן מאמינים בני מאמינים, ואתה אין סופך להאמין. הן מאמינים - דכתיב ויאמן העם, בני מאמינים והאמין בה'. אתה אין סופך להאמין - שנאמר יען לא האמנתם בי וגו'. ממאי דלקה - דכתיב ויאמר ה' לו עוד הבא נא ידך בחיקך וגו'.
Reish Lakish said: One who suspects the innocent will be physically harmed. It is written, ‘And they will not believe me,’ and Gd knew that the Jews would believe. Gd said to Moshe: They are believers, children of believers - and you, in the end, will not believe!... And how do we know he was harmed? For it is written, ‘And Gd said to him, Put your hand in your chest again…’

More generally: The imperative to proactively create a society of trust
21. Mishnah, Shekalim 3:2
אין התורם נכנס לא בפרגוד חפות ולא במנעל ולא בסנדל ולא בתפילין ולא בקמיע שמא יעני ויאמרו מעון הלשכה העני או שמא יעשיר ויאמרו מתרומת הלשכה העשיר לפי שאדם צריך לצאת ידי הבריות כדרך שצריך לצאת ידי המקום שנאמר (במדבר ל"ב) והייתם נקיים מה' ומישראל ואומר (משלי ג') ומצא חן ושכל טוב בעיני אלקים ואדם:
The tither could not enter with hemmed clothes, shoes, sandals, tefillin or amulets, lest he become poor such that people might say he was impoverished because of sinning with the shekalim or lest he become wealthy such that people might he say he was enriched by the shekalim. One is obligated to satisfy others as he is obligated to satisfy Gd, as it is written (Bamidbar 32), ‘And you shall be clean from Gd and Israel,’ and it is written (Proverbs 3), ‘And you will find favor and [a reputation for] wisdom on the eyes of Gd and Man.’

The relationship between human and Gd
22. Rambam, Mishneh Torah, Hilchot Teshuvah 2:2
ומה היא התשובה הוא שיעזוב החוטא חטאו ויסירו ממחשבתו ויגמור בלבו שלא יעשהו עוד... ויעיד עליו יודע תעלומות שלא ישוב לזה החטא לעולם...
What is repentance? For the sinner to abandon his sin and remove it from his though, and conclude in his heart that he will never commit it again… and the One who knows all hidden things will testify that he will never return to this sin…

23. Hosheia 12:13-14
ויברח יעקב שדה ארם ויעבד ישראל באשה ובאשה שמר: ובנביא העלה יקוק את ישראל ממצרים ובנביא נשמר:
And Yaakov fled to the field of Aram, and Yisrael worked for a woman, and waited for a woman. And with a prophet HaShem brought Yisrael up from Egypt, and with a prophet He waited.

24. Hosheia 2:21-22
וארשתיך לי לעולם וארשתיך לי בצדק ובמשפט ובחסד וברחמים: וארשתיך לי באמונה וידעת את יקוק:
And I will betroth you to Me forever, and I will betroth you to Me with righteousness, justice, generosity and mercy, and I will betroth you to Me with trust, and you will know HaShem.

1 comment:

  1. Would you help with this cause? time is of essence! PLEASE...

    "To save one life is like saving the whole world!"

    Please take a few moments and help save the life of Martin Grossman

    We need your help today to save the life of Martin Grossman who is set to be executed on February 16th. We are only advocating that he not get the death penalty at this time. We are asking that the Governor take the time to hold a proper clemency hearing to determine if the Death Penalty is really appropriate in this case. This may not be easy for you to go out of your way to try and save the life of someone who took someone else’s life but we must do what is just and right and what the Bible teaches us is correct.

    Read more: