- Category : Occult-Fields-Numerologist
- Type : GP
- Profile : 1/3 - Investigating / Martyr
- Definition : Split - Small (16)
- Incarnation Cross : RAX Contagion 4
Dutch economist, professor of econometrics, publicist and eminent mystical scholar on the Hebrew bible and its roots in kabbalah.
Friedrich or Fryderyk Weinreb was the eldest son of an orthodox Jewish family in Lemberg, Kingdom of Galicia and Lodomeria in Austria-Hungary. The region was poor and many people emigrated. His parents David Herch Weinreb, a sigar dealer and Hencie (Hermine) Sternhell moved during WW1 via Vienna to arrive 12 July 1916 at Scheveningen, where a small colony of East European Jews existed. Here Friedrich spent his youth. On 22 July 1927 the immigrant family became Dutch via naturalisation.
He was an extremely bright child, learned reading at age 3, made a "news paper" at age 5, followed the Hogere Burger School with ease and in 1930 started to study economics at the Handels-Hoogeschool in Rotterdam, now the Erasmus University. Because of the early death of his parents, he got into financial trouble and was unable to finish his study. In January 1932 he got a job at the Dutch Economic Institute, managed by professor Piet Lieftinck and the 1969 Noble prize winner Jan Tinbergen, who were impressed by his intelligence. He now could work at the Institute to earn the needed money for his young family in Scheveningen, whilst he studied in the evening. On 16 December 1938 he became an economist. He hoped to promote at the Institute, but after the German occupation he got fired, because of his Jewish background (November 1941).
The Weinreb Affair
Being now in major financial and existential trouble, he started December 1941 a complex double play that is now known as the Weinreb Affair. In his memoirs Weinreb wrote that his fraud initially was set up to give Jews hope. He told Jewish friends detailed stories about an actually not existing escape route by train from the occupied Netherlands via Vichy France to Portugal. Later he told that a fictitious Wehrmacht general Von Schumann had commissioned him personally to make a list of paying Jews for the intended group emigration. Weinreb even faked being a doctor, doing medical examinations on female candidates. In the summer of 1942 Weinreb got connections with the resistance movement in Den Haag, helping them to falsify documents and to find hiding places.
But on 11 September 1942 the Sicherheitsdienst (SD) caught Weinreb and interrogated him the next day in "Huize Windekind" in Den Haag. Here the SD played the "U-Boot spiel", which is now called waterboarding. Later they send him to prison in Scheveningen. He was forced to give them names of illegal workers, but he also convinced the SD that there were elements in the Wehrmacht that had other plans with the Jews than Hitler. The SD decided to release him and to follow Weinreb to find them. Weinreb went on with his secret "Schindler's List" like activities, now even protected by the SD. Early October 1942 he even managed to postpone the transport of several hundred Jews on his list in Camp Westerbork to the destruction camps (Vernichtungslager) in the East. But around December 1942 the SD discovered his fraud and on 8 January 1943 his list lost its protected status. His family was sent to Westerbork and on 18 January 1943 Weinreb was captured and tortured for weeks in Scheveningen. On 13 May 1943, after having again given names ("doorslaan") of persecuted Dutch people, he was sent as a broken man back to Camp Westerbork. All hope seemed lost.
But on 28 June 1943 the SD brought him to the prison of Scheveningen ("Oranjehotel") again, now to use him as a living puppet and bait. He had to play the game with the emigration list again, but now fully under their control. In this way the SD hoped to find the names and addresses of still hiding Jews and their helpers. He first had to operate during short periods of leave from Scheveningen prison, but September 1943 he and his family were "freed" and he was allowed to operate from his house in Scheveningen. From end November 1943 to early February 1944 the list again appeared in Westerbork and some Jews got delay of being transported to be executed in the East.
The SD was unsatisfied with the results and decided to stop the operation. Just before that, Weinreb and his family managed to escape and went underground in Gelderland (7 February 1944 - May 1945).
In 1976 a Dutch report of the NIOD, six years after the ministerial commitment to the "Rijksinstituut voor Oorlogsdocumentatie", tried to give a macabre balance of saves (escaped, hided) and losses (named SD victims) of his acting: More than hundred became victim of it, whilst Weinreb actually "only" saved a few tens. He only delayed the transportation of the hundreds of Jews on his list. But is also evident that Weinreb never voluntary betrayed any victim of the Nazi's, as names were only given by him in imprisonment, under torture or with the threat of torture and death of his beloved ones. Here the SD played a cruel and merciless game, compared to which the devil as portrayed in the book of Job was only a soft kind of "fallen" angel.
In his after the war in in Dutch prison written main work "De bijbel als schepping" (1963, Roots of the bible) Weinreb interpreted the Biblical massacre in which "Samson killed a thousand of the Philistines with a jaw-bone" not as a literary victory of the G'd or Israel in some massacre. That was impossible, as G'd loved all people ("You are gods; you are all sons of the Most High.") and even cared for the tiniest birds and flowers and hesitated to kill a fly. No, it spiritually dealt with killing the calculating ego (merchant) in you and me. And the Exodus from Egypt was numerologically seen also a spiritual journey along 40 resting places.
But after the war dualist views on good and bad reigned. Weinreb was arrested on 3 June 1945 and was accused of fraud and collaboration with the German enemy. Weinreb denied any bad intentions. He admitted that he personally had so much identified with his imagined role of saviour or liberator of the Jews (Messiah), that he eventually became to belief in it. G'd works in mysterious ways.
On 27 November 1947 Weinreb was sentenced by the "Bijzonder Gerechtshof" (Special Court) in Den Haag for treasury and cell espionage to three and a half year prison. On 25 October 1949 it was heightened to six years by the "Bijzondere Raad van Cassatie" (Court of Appeal). But he got amnesty in the year that Queen Juliana succeeded Wilhelmina (4 September 1948) and was already conditionally liberated on 11 December 1948.
After his release from prison, Weinreb was supported by his former employees, Piet Lieftinck, the first Dutch minister of Finance after the war and famous for the "Ten guilder of Lieftinck" black money reform and professor Jan Tinbergen to find a new job, but he had trouble getting a fitting job. He wished to combine his economic work for the daily bread with his wish to become a spiritual leader, writer and counsellor. He had this wish for a long time, but after being freed from the Germans, on the day that the all on earth destructing first uranium gun-type atomic bomb fell on Hiroshima (6 Augustus 1945), his wife urged him to write: "Freek, nú moet je gaan schrijven, want het geheim van de schepping wordt aangetast"(Freek, now you must write, as the The Secret of the Creation is being attacked). She feared for the end of the oral human tradition.
Weinreb was a charismatic person, who got followers under Hebrew studying theologians and mystical seekers. Some female followers became dependent on him, viewing him as a guru or father figure. But he was not a saint. He more than once in his life played his favourite role of a so-called objective sterile medical doctor, to study the body of females as a kind of observer. Because of those kind of sex scandals his appointments as a professor of econometrics in Jakarta (1952-1956) and in Ankara (1958-1961) ended prematurely. In 1958 he was sentenced to a fine in the Netherlands for quackery by playing the doctors role. Since 1961 he was a free-lance economic advisor, but early 1968 he was warned by the psychic Greet Hofmans to leave the country. On 23 January 1968 she wrote that Weinreb "opgenomen is in een onafzienbare reeks van beschuldigingen. Onafzienbaar, want ze leveren hem uit aan de politie en wie weet wat ze dan zullen doen." Weinreb did not hesitate and fled to his son in Antwerpen. Greet Hofman's forecast on her death bed (she had incurable cancer) proved right: On 18 April 1968 Weinreb was sentenced to four months prison in the "Vlaardingse zedenzaak" by the court of Rotterdam.
As he did not want to be in prison again, he moved to his son in the hasidic community of Antwerpen (1968), Israel (1968?), later Zürich, Switzerland (1973) and never came back in the Netherlands. But he held his lectures for Dutch followers in Antwerpen about "Het bijbelboek Jona" from 1968/69, speaking with heart and soul about Jonah's death and rebirth.
During the sixties Weinreb became again a controversial person in the Netherlands. The historian and poet Jacob Presser had accepted Weinrebs version of his story in his 1965 book "Persecution of the Jews in the Netherlands during World War II". But others accused Weinreb of suffering from "Pseudologia fantastica". The existential no-nonsense atheistic writer W.F. Hermans saw Weinreb, who already had written a lot on his version of the Kaballah, the ancient Jewish tradition, as a typical charlatan. As did conclude the Jewish scholar Gershom Scholem, who did not speak or read the Dutch language. The Jewish feminist Renate Rubinstein became his defender. But orthodox Jewish people accused him of giving the secret oral wisdom of the Kaballah in his influential work "De bijbel als schepping" as a gift to the not "hibri" swine's. The Weinreb debate became an irresolvable Babylonian confusion, as so many views and levels of personal experience were involved with it.
The relation between his life and work still remains a mystery. Weinreb published some 90 written works and many more public lectures. After he left Holland, he held Dutch lectures in Antwerpen. His important course about the death and rebirth of Jonah (1968/69) was held here, as an once secret oral tradition, now recorded, transcribed and published by the by him established "Academie voor de Hebreeuwse Bijbel en de Hebreeuwse Taal" (1964/20/2) for the benefit of all: "1945-1964 Beslissende ervaringen en inzichten: eerste schriftelijke neerslag van deze ervaringen en studieresultaten in de vorm van korte notities. De meer dan tienduizend pagina's tellende notities betekenen een keerpunt in zijn wijze van benaderen. Ontdekking van belangrijke sleutels tot een nog onbekend elementair gebied, waar mystieke ervaring en exact weten samenkomen. Keerpunt ook in zijn leven."
According to some Dutch theologians his editor spoke his "Das Buch Jonah", 1970 Thauros Verlag, dealing with the Scorpio theme of death and regeneration was his finest work. It deals with the difficult choices one has to make in spiritual life. It is also translated (back again) into Dutch.
Weinreb married on 28 October 1936 Esther Guthwirth (Antwerpen) and got 2 sons and 4 daughters. He died 20 October 1988 at old age in Zürich.
In 1980 the Freidrich Weinreb Stiftung was erected in Zurich.