This article attempts to apply Rank?s concept of individual birth trauma to the history of ancient Israel as depicted in the Bible. The birth of the Jewish people as reviewed in the relevant Biblical texts demonstrates recurrent and significant traumata at individual, family, and large-scale collective levels, indicating that the early Israelites did experience collective birth trauma. Ramifications of this for a greater understanding of the Bible and of Jewish history and cultural practices are explored. The potential need and possibility of clinical treatment of collective trauma is also discussed.
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