Passing Phrase -

Chutz La'Aretz

Literally: Outside of the Land (of Israel)
Idiomatically: Abroad

Talking about ethnocentrism, this phrase, first used in the Jerusalem Talmud ( Sheviit 36b), refers to the centrality of Israel in Jewish life. Basically, the Hebrew phrase for "abroad" means anywhere outside the Land of Israel. In other words, there is Israel. And then there is everywhere else. Logically, it makes sense: If you are not in Israel, then you are Outside of Israel. But note that this term is specific to Israel and not general like the word "abroad" which can be applied to any country worldwide.

So how far outside of Israel is "chul" (the abbreviation for Chutz La'Aretz)? That, of course, is a controversial question. There are those who consider Eilat "chul" while others consider certain parts of Lebanon and Syria part of Israel. Of course, there seems to be a general agreement that anyone who flies to Turkey for vacation isn't really traveling to Chutz La'Aretz.

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