I've always been interested in what goes into the making of a Zionist, whether gentile or Jewish. As with any other ideology, whether political or religious, childhood influences seem to be crucial.
Take, for example, the case of Greg Sheridan, Australia's most influential foreign affairs commentator, or so Murdoch's Australian, of which he is the foreign editor, touts him. Did Aunt Poppy hard-wire him in his early childhood?:
"The biggest influence on Dad's life was his Auntie Poppy... My mother firmly believed that Auntie Poppy was Dad's real mother. She told me many times after his death that Dad had believed that too... It is impossible to establish whether this is true or not. Auntie Poppy never married. The only man she had ever been known to keep company with, before Dad was born, was Jewish, so perhaps I have Jewish ancestry on my father's side. In those far off days, how would a Catholic-Jewish union have worked? Auntie Poppy's family could cope with an irregular child... but they could never have accepted Auntie Poppy leaving the Church, or bringing up a child other than as a Catholic. And what of the man's family? My family was always pro-Jewish and pro-Israel. Dad often told me that if Christ was the saviour, the Catholic religion was true, and if he wasn't the saviour, then the Jewish religion was true... Auntie Poppy always told me I must never forget that the Jews were God's chosen people... Dad and Auntie Poppy were always pro-Jewish and pro-Israel." (When We Were Young & Foolish: A Memoir of My Misguided Youth with Tony Abbott, Bob Carr, Malcolm Turnbull, Kevin Rudd & Other Reprobates, 2015, pp 21-22)
Has Sheridan ever struggled with such childhood/childish certainties?
What, I wonder, would he make of 1 Corinthians 13:11?:
When I was a child, I spoke as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child: but when I became a man, I put away childish things.