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This increasing pluralism, of course, brings with it certain advantages--so the conventional wisdom goes-- advantages including opportunities of openness, new percep- tions of old problems, breakdown of triumphalisms, to name a few. The dark side of this growing situation is that opportunities for tension, hostility and enmity also will rise. One person's now freedom in a pluralistic world is another's way of life threatened. More people are more likely to have more opportunities to perceive enemies than previously.

This study may allow for some reflection on how to deal with enemies. Perhaps the historical and cultural distance of the modern student from the Israelite sages will offer a certain amount of "safe" space in which to experiment imaginatively with various stances within the context of enemies, their attacks and wisdom. If such proves true in even a limited way, then the investigation will have been personally rewarding. Only the reader can make that judgment.

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