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Monthly Archives: January, 2014

The Latest, Greatest Destructive Idea

January 30th, 2014 Posted by Susan's Musings 1 comment

My new friend, Evernote, allows me to electronically clip and save articles. Like the small, dishwasher stick-on that I wrote about in my Duh! Moments Musing (Oct. 12, 2011), Evernote has simplified my life enormously. I am now dealing with entering a backlog of articles that currently exist on yellowing paper in my desk drawer or that are referred to in an email via a digital link.

Obviously, the articles I track tend to be on topics that interest me. Marriage and children rank high. Reviewing so many of them over the course of a few days has impressed on me not only how many articles are written but also how much they contradict each other.  

We are not in control of our lives in a million and one ways. We are born into a certain genetic reality, a distinct family, a particular nation and a specific time. We live in a world with drunk drivers, suicide bombers and debilitating illnesses. We can – and should – make the best of the hand we are dealt, but expecting a storybook fantasy life is foolish.

The above sentiments notwithstanding, most of us in the civilized world have a great deal of control over important life decisions. Of these decisions, fewer have greater impact that how we plan for and act in regards to marriage and family. Which is why the plethora of articles I am perusing that argue for and against marriage, for and against having children, for and against mothers working outside the home, for and against fathers being the chief homemaker, etc., etc., etc., is striking.

You can find studies and anecdotal evidence to support whatever path you want to take. If five years down the road, the study proves to be flawed or the interviewed protagonist regrets his or her actions, the journalist is busy writing a new story while the reader who acted on the information does not get a new life.

Currently, parents who ‘follow the crowd’ are getting the message that responsible parenting means making sure that their teenage children understand and use safe-sex methods and birth control. For most people, the concept that sex belongs exclusively in marriage isn’t even on the horizon.

Our culture doesn’t even present a physical relationship as a uniquely adult activity. At best, parents trained by today’s intelligentsia might quibble over whether sexual activity should start at age fifteen, seventeen or nineteen.The ‘powers that be’, meanwhile, are on the wrong side, combatting natural reticence and modesty from the time kids are in kindergarten and continuing through co-ed bathrooms in college.

In Jewish tradition, the patriarch Abraham is referred to in Hebrew with the appellation, Ha’ivri (Ha-eev-ree). This translates as “the crosser-over;” a man who stepped away from the norms of his generation and was willing to stand on the other side of the generational current.

Parents and grandparents today need to start strategizing what values they want to bequeath their offspring almost from birth. Leaving it to others is a dangerous option.

Seeing the terrible advice out there has reinforced my pride in providing a powerful weapon for those teenagers who want to step away from the sexually accelerated culture in which they are immersed. Gila Manolson’s book,

Hands Off! This May Be Love
God’s Gift for Establishing Enduring Relationships

 Is an engaging read providing anecdotal and scientific information that gives intelligent, thinking young men and women reason to plot their own destiny rather than follow the crowd.
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Well, Meet My Father-in-Law

January 28th, 2014 Posted by Thought Tools No Comment yet

Having debuted in 2006, Psych is the USA cable network’s longest running original series.  It is set in Santa Barbara but for reasons having to do with production costs and trade unions, the series is filmed in Canada.  The scenery is recognizably coastal British Columbia, which my family and I know well from our summer boating trips.

The hero, the son of a diligent police officer, solves mysteries that baffle the police (of course) using what everyone believes to be his psychic ability.  In truth his secret is the remarkable observational skill his detective dad trained him to develop from the time he was a small child.  Shawn spots what everyone else ignores; the laundry receipt on the floor or a smear of paint on someone’s shoe.

Like Shawn, we can and all should develop our ability to see – no really see – everything, especially when studying Bible.  For instance, consider this apparently unimportant verse:

And Esau was forty years old when he married Judith
the daughter of Be’eiri the Hittite…
(Genesis 26:34)

Do we really need to know the name of Esau’s wife and father-in-law?  After all, we know very few of the names of the wives of the twelve tribes of Israel.  Furthermore, who cares how old Esau was when he married?

It’s time to polish our observational skills and really see the facts that will help solve the mystery.  First, the name of Esau’s father-in-law is “Be’eiri”. It helps to know that the Hebrew word for a well is “Be’eir.” Second, the name Be’eiri appears only one more time in Scripture, in the first verse of Hosea.

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Furthermore, while the word Be’eir, meaning a well, a source of water, appears fewer than thirty times in all the Five Books of Moses, over twenty of these mentions are found in Genesis. What is more, they are all found within a few chapters clustered around our mysterious verse – Genesis 26:34. Both Isaac and Jacob meet their brides at a well. One of the additional mentions is the well at which Moses meets his wife (Exodus 2:15).

In Torah, water is a metaphor for true, God-centered knowledge.  Thus, a well in the context of marriage implies that the couple is bound by a common commitment to the eternal knowledge of God. Ancient Jewish wisdom explains that by seeking out a woman connected to a well, even if this association is only her father’s name, Esau is saying, “Me too!  I am just as connected to God as my father.”

By marrying the daughter of a “well-guy”, Esau is attempting to depict himself to be better than he really was. Without truly clinging to Isaac’s core beliefs and principles, he wants the credit for doing so. He even chooses to marry at exactly the same age as his father did, mistaking this type of external similarity for substance. The atypical inclusion of his age when marrying tips us off that this fact reveals important insights. On the surface, Esau looks good; his inside doesn’t match his outside.  Though easy for the casual reader to miss, all these seemingly innocuous details in Genesis 26:34 combine to depict someone trying to paint himself as more worthy than he really is.

In contrast, the Book of Hosea opens by identifying the prophet as a “well-guy”- a Be’eiri.  Hosea isn’t pretending to associate with true knowledge; it is actually part of him. Though he is soon to marry very unsuitable women, Scripture is disclosing that he is acting upon God’s direct instructions. On the surface, he doesn’t look good; yet he is following Divine wisdom.

It is easy to miss signs that should alert us to someone’s poor character.  We see what a date, employee or employer want us to see, missing what is beneath the surface. Training ourselves carefully to observe details is vital.  We may not be psychic, but we can notice easily overlooked clues.

Our lives today are impacted by Esau and his spiritual descendants. Perhaps we, ourselves, want to turn away from a poor family legacy and start an upstanding new one. Whether we want to understand what is happening in the explosive Middle East or in our private lives, examining Scriptural clues surrounding Esau is vital. Our 2-audio CD program, Clash of Destiny: Decoding the Secrets of Israel and Islam does just that. It is on sale right now, by instant download or mail, full of insights that will change the way you see the world and interact with it.

CLASH OF DESTINY: DECODING THE SECRETS OF ISRAEL AND ISLAMClash of Destiny Case

 

Color Me Independent

January 23rd, 2014 Posted by Susan's Musings 12 comments

House Republicans are officially gathering for a retreat shortly. I completely understand why I haven’t been invited; I find it harder to understand why some of the prominent people who share my views haven’t been. I hope the House Republicans emerge from their meeting ready to explain to the national Party leadership the dangers of continuing to spurn people like me. 

According to the Pew report, increasing numbers of Americans are declaring themselves as independent rather than choosing to belong to one of our two national parties. The majority of these people are leaving the Republican, not the Democratic Party. Like many reports, this one has led to much pontificating, hand wringing and contradictory calls for action. Some of this is appropriate, as independents are, almost by definition, a hard group to classify. The danger is playing with statistics to define them as monolithic.

I am one of those no-longer-affiliated voters. Technically, my registration reads Republican, yet emotionally (financially and sweat-equity-wise) I don’t consider myself a member. If asked, I would tell a pollster that I am an independent. Since, in today’s climate, my views are conservative on both social and economic issues, in theory, I should be a good Republican match. What happened?

Years ago, when I had a house full of small children, I entered a national toy chain store. The layout of the store was confusing; the employees were sluggish and uninformed. I left empty-handed. I was looking for toys – the store and I should have been a good match, yet we weren’t.

I try to live my life according to the precepts of the Torah. Frequently, I receive appeals from charities that identify themselves as supporting those try to do the same. Often, these appeals go straight to the trashcan. Not only do I not want to offer money, I find the groups they service to be embarrassing. We may use similar words, but we are worlds apart on what those words mean.

There is no dearth of places to buy toys or of charities to support. Similarly, there is no lack of political candidates or issues to champion. When I shop at a national chain it is based on reputation. My experience with that chain and the experience of millions of other people, tell me that I can rely on quality, price and service. If the national company doesn’t provide that umbrella of respectability and stability, sharing the larger chain name is meaningless. If names like Costco or Nordstrom have wildly different meanings in different cities and states, I might as well explore boutiques and mom and pop stores, choosing to shop at some and reject others. Some local variety is desirable; too much is detrimental.

As I see it, a national political party needs to provide reputation, guidance and reliability to have value. Unfortunately, the national Republican Party seems to be unclear who it is. In theory, it stands for principles with which I agree, yet it provides incompetent leadership leaving its members to flounder inarticulately. Furthermore, it appears unconvinced of the worth of the ideas it espouses. While the Democratic Party seems to issue hourly talking points to its elected officials, I see no evidence that the Republican Party has ever heard of the phrase. It’s the Wild West where Republicans are concerned.

Both belligerent John McCain and hapless Todd Akin are examples. I may not agree with everything Ted Cruz or Rand Paul say, but when John McCain, the previous Republican presidential candidate, calls them “wacko” in a Huffington Post interview and is not publicly rebuked and criticized by the national Republican Party for that, it is clear that this group neither respects nor values me. Similarly, the party was completely out of touch with reality not to realize that the last election would not be only about economic issues. By not providing guidance and preparing candidates on how to speak about abortion or other social issues in intelligent and principled ways, candidates like Akin were left to flounder and sink. I see no proof of lessons learned.

My hope is that many true conservative, optimistic, genial and wise leaders emerge. Our country desperately needs them. They will almost certainly run under the Republican banner. Yet, unless the party undergoes a metamorphosis, these candidates will actually be hampered, not helped, by the Republican albatross around their necks.

Agree? Disagree? Tired of politics? Share your thoughts in the comment section below.

 

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Passion for the Podium

January 21st, 2014 Posted by Thought Tools No Comment yet

Has anxiety every prevented you from speaking out at a meeting?  Do you attend family weddings and funerals with a dread of being asked to give a toast or eulogy?  Have you demurred when asked to make introductions at conferences?  Have you stumbled through an incoherent attempt to express appreciation after receiving an award? Have you declined an invitation to teach a class?

If you answer yes to any of those questions, you’re missing opportunities to enhance your social life and forfeiting potential propellants for your professional life.

There are dozens of tips for aspiring speakers yet people often ask me what might be the one most important thing to grasp in order to develop public speaking skills.

When friends ask me what is the one most important skill needed to navigate a sailboat from the West Coast to Hawaii or what is the one most important thing to be a good husband/wife my answer is always the same.  There is no one most important thing—there are many equally important skills.

However, when it comes to public speaking, there actually is ‘one most important’ thing. We can find it in ancient Jewish wisdom.

Each of the Five Books of Moses possesses a Hebrew name that uniquely captures the essence of the book.  For instance, Genesis is Bereishit-In the Beginning. It describes the beginning of the world and the beginnings of the people of Israel.  Exodus is Shemot—Names—and teaches both the general and specific significance of names.  Leviticus is Vayikra—And He called—teaching the meaning of a calling such as that of the Levites. Numbers is BaMidbar—In the Desert—addressing our enhanced ability to learn when distractions are absent.  Finally, Deuteronomy, in Hebrew Devarim, means Words.

Isn’t that a rather bland title for the grand finale of the Torah?  After all, every one of the other four books is also filled with words—indeed very important words.  Couldn’t any of the earlier books also have been called, Words?

Ancient Jewish wisdom explains that Deuteronomy is the record of a veritable Niagara-like cascade of words that Moses delivered in a non-stop thirty-day talking marathon during the final month of his life.

What is more, that identical word, Devarim—Words— was used about forty years earlier during Moses’ first conversation with God at the famous Burning Bush.

And Moses said to God, ‘Please Lord, I am not a man of words…’
(Exodus 4:10)

God responds by explaining that Moses’ brother Aaron can help him.  Yet, we don’t ever hear of Aaron speaking for Moses.  Apparently, Moses manages to overcome his impediment even to the extent of delivering a flawless thirty-day speech.

His secret was passion for his mission, which he saw as bringing God’s words to humanity.  Once that passion was ignited in his being, Moses never again experienced difficulty expressing himself in public.

There are so many valuable tips, tools, and techniques for public speaking.  Plan your speech.  Divide it into easily remembered modules.  Memorize a key word for each module then deliver your speech without notes in front of you. Connect with your audience through a little self-deprecating humor.  Use your hands effectively.

Don’t end your sentences in a rising cadence that makes them sound like questions. Make assertive statements instead.  Banish the filler syllable.  A short silence is fine, but stop saying ‘um’ and ‘er’. Speak much more slowly than sounds normal to you. There are many other tips.

However, the one most important thing is to develop passion for your message.  It makes little difference whether you’re planning a toast or a eulogy, a class or an introduction.  Whichever of these or others it might be, you are presenting an idea.  Develop real passion for your message, then get up and speak those words.

You can make mistakes that interfere with getting your message across. One of the worst things you can do is to accustom yourself to hearing or using profanity. I explore how vulgarity threatens relationships and finances in my audio CD, Perils of Profanity: You Are What You Speak. What’s more, I explain why thinking, “I only speak that way with my friends,” is a false premise and why even listening to profanity affects us.  Save even more with an instant download!

 

 

 

Larking About

January 16th, 2014 Posted by Susan's Musings 2 comments

I once received a frantic phone call from my sister, worrying that something was terribly wrong. She had stopped in at our parents’ home and my mother wasn’t there. That would have been unremarkable, however what worried her was that the sink was full of dishes! Only a crisis, she was sure, would have led my mother to go out leaving a dirty kitchen.  A short while later the mystery was resolved when it turned out that a neighbor had urged my mother to join her on a last minute outing and, uncharacteristically, my mother impulsively agreed.

My children would not be surprised in the least to find dirty dishes in my sink. I am a morning person, sometimes known as a lark. I usually wake up ready to go, do my best thinking in the a.m. and fade as the day moves on. Even in high school, rather than staying up late studying, my preference was to go to sleep at ten and get up at four if I needed to put in an extra few hours before a test.

This means that although I do feel somewhat guilty, I tend to leave supper dishes in the sink overnight, preferring to tackle them in the morning. A good night’s sleep transforms a monotonous chore into a pleasant time for quiet introspection.

My morning bias also means that if I don’t plan for supper in the morning, chances for a delicious and nutritious meal are minimal.  Although I am far from fastidious about housekeeping, I like having clean clothes and a tidy house, and these jobs too, tend to be neglected if not done early in the day.

I also enjoy my work: writing, editing, brainstorming new teachings, and being in touch with our virtual community. There are administrative tasks that are fulfilling as well. Nonetheless, I have not figured out how to give the best of myself to both home and work.

We sometimes self-righteously boast that there is more freedom of activity and thought today than there used to be. For example, we scorn times when women were excluded from certain jobs based on their gender. However, our times have limitations as well. When companies are forced by government to allocate resources to a day care center or threatened with lawsuits if their workforce skews male, the result is that women who don’t want to work outside the home end up doing so. Among other things, they are frequently more employable than their husbands are, or the price of goods or services goes up so that a second income becomes a necessity, not a luxury. When society sneers at homemaking as a talent, young women don’t explore if they might actually enjoy devoting time to that endeavor.

The number of hours in a day hasn’t changed, nor has the reality that most of us cycle through periods of greater and lesser energy. I’m writing this in the evening, with my dishes soaking, full of gratitude for a family that appreciates the effort that goes into making a home and that has a laid back attitude as to when that actually gets done.

It has been fun to see so many of you purchasing the book we just published. I’d love to hear your impressions after reading Hands Off! This May Be Love: God’s Gift for Establishing Enduring Relationships by Gila Manolson. Do leave a comment below or write to me at admin@rabbidaniellapin.com.

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R-E-S-P-E-C-T

January 15th, 2014 Posted by Thought Tools No Comment yet

“He doesn’t treat me with respect,” she complained bitterly.  What exactly does she mean?  Did he fail to rise from his La-Z-Boy recliner when she entered the room?  Did he speak to her brusquely or patronizingly? Without further explanation, it’s difficult to know whether he’s a lout or whether she is excessively demanding.

The Hebrew word for respect—KaVoD—is the same as the Hebrew word for heavy or weighty—KaVeD.

KVD honor and weighty cropped

This helps us understand that treating someone or something with respect means according due weightiness.  For this reason, we use the word gravitas in English. Gravitas, derived from the Latin for gravity, implies weightiness. Without gravity, nothing would have any weight.

It wasn’t a new idea when Aretha Franklin sang in 1967, “…all I’m askin’ is for a little respect…”  Eve did so far earlier.  Let’s examine a conversation between Eve and the serpent.

…and [the serpent] said to the woman,
“Is it true that God told you not to eat of any of the trees of the garden?”
(Genesis 3:1)

As any sales professional knows, never ask a prospect a question that can be answered with a yes or a no. That makes it too easy to end the conversation.  A man trying to engage a woman in conversation knows the same thing.  And the serpent, up to no good, knows he must engage Eve.

Ordinarily, she might never have stooped to converse with the serpent but his scurrilous implication is too much for her to bear.  She has to defend God from that defamatory accusation.

Therefore, she responded saying:

…from the fruit of trees in the garden we may eat.
…from the… tree in the middle of the garden,
God said don’t eat of it and don’t touch it lest you die.
(Genesis 3:2-3)

Wait a minute!  Eve wasn’t present in the garden when God told Adam in Genesis 2:17 that the fruit of the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil was prohibited.  God said nothing to Adam about touching the tree!

Clearly, after Eve joined Adam, he related to her the prohibition against eating the fruit of the special tree.  However, ancient Jewish wisdom points out that Adam added an extra prohibition of his own.  He told Eve that death would result not only from eating the fruit of the tree but also from merely touching the tree.

Ancient Jewish wisdom fills in more hidden information.  After Eve finished speaking to the serpent in Genesis 3:3, he ‘accidentally’ stumbled against her and pushed her into the tree.  After she touched the tree, the serpent says to her:

…you won’t die…
(Genesis 3:4)

The serpent’s logic is impeccable. You’ve touched the tree and nothing happened. The bit about dying if you eat of the fruit must be equally false.  Whereupon Eve tasted from the fruit and gave also to Adam (Genesis 3:6)

Adam could have said, “We want to obey God and not eat of the fruit of that tree. Let’s place an additional obstacle for our safety. Let’s decide even to not touch the tree.

But he didn’t.  Adam treated Eve as if she was a child pretending that his idea was God’s word.  He showed disrespect by not allowing her to carry the weight of full knowledge and a shared decision.  The consequences were fatal.

It is so much easier to tell our employees, spouses and friends what we have decided rather than to request feedback or share our reasoning. While in unequal relationships (such as with children) this might be necessary occasionally, most of us err by doing so too frequently. According respect is basic human dignity. It is also wise policy and we benefit from this deeper understanding of the above verses.

One area sorely missing respect is relationships. We immerse our young in a sexualized culture, degrading a wondrous and wonderful gift of God. I can’t highly enough recommend Gila Manolson’s book, Hands Off! This May Be Love: God’s Gift for Enduring Relationships (which we proudly publish). This enjoyable combination of anecdotes, science and God’s word. It is a necessary read for anyone in junior high, high school or college, and those who love them. I invite you to read more here.

Hands Off! This May Be Love: God’s Gift for Enduring Relationships

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Tough and Tougher (but so worth it)

January 7th, 2014 Posted by Susan's Musings 1 comment

I am cleaning out my closet (again), this time sending lots of homeschooling reading material to my daughters who are in the trenches. With my weakness for the written word, I am skimming through magazines as I pack them. This quote from the January-February, 1994 issue of Home Education Magazine, pops out at me:

These are difficult times in which to raise a family. In spite of all the rhetoric from various directions about saving the family, we find as little real support for helping families as we found for educating our children.

Doesn’t the quote sound a little quaint?  I think that one major change over these twenty years is that we are less concerned with saving the family and more concerned with rights of the individual. Although statistics show how much the scales are tipped against children who do not grow up in a home with a mother and father who are (have been and will be) married to each other, we don’t want to discuss that. Instead, the focus is on the individual adult. If women want to have children, a husband is an optional appendage. If men want to have children, a woman is a biological rather than emotional or social necessity. Whatever we want to do is fine – we are told that how we define family is in our hands.

Anyone who was a parent to a five-year-old child back in 1994 is this year the parent of a twenty-five year old. In my mind, that twenty-five year old, raising his or her own child, faces immense challenges, among them that a man and woman in their twenties getting married, supporting themselves, and having children is in itself becoming a rare and endangered agenda.

As I glance through my homeschooling books and magazines, I get glimpses at how much the world has changed. The incredible responsibility and privilege that lies on parents’ shoulders remains the same. Different times bring different challenges. We don’t get to choose if we would prefer our children to grow up during the polio epidemic of the 1940’s or the heroin culture of the 1960’s; in wartime or peacetime; in times of economic prosperity or stagnation. Physical threats dominate some eras, spiritual threats imperil others.

We do get to decide if we will ‘go with the flow’ or deliberately set our feet on certain paths. Those paths may end up being treacherous or faulty, but paraphrasing an author I read who needed to make myriad choices for her ill child, we can only use the information we have to make what we believe is the best choice – omniscience isn’t an option. Our daughters and their husbands’ trials are different from those my husband and I faced, but what hasn’t changed is that caring, diligent parents are among the world’s greatest treasures.

In that vein, I am immensely proud that my husband and I (aka Lifecodex Publishing) partnered with author Gila Manolson on her brand new book, Hands Off! This May Be Love. Gila and I have worked together for months to take knowledge she has accumulated through years of writing, research and international speaking and make it available to a wider audience. Her book, exploring how powerful touch is and how young people, in particular, need to understand this power, is warm and accessible while packing a strong punch. I’d love to share some pre-publication reviews we’ve received about this book.

Gila Manolson’s book, Hand’s Off! This May Be Love, is one of the best and most needed books we’ve read in a long time.

It should be required reading in High Schools! She eloquently describes the importance of not only honoring and respecting the opposite sex but also honoring and respecting yourself enough to wait before you build those powerful connections brought through touch. These truths can be utilized in every relationship including the workplace.   I highly recommend this book for Youth leaders in Churches.

Thanks for a marvelous read!

Pastors Mark and Vicki Biltz
Tacoma, WA

 

This book is important, bold, and to some, even controversial. The principles presented are sound and hold the potential to turn the cultural tide. They address one of the greatest needs in our time and present a worthy challenge to the current generation. The future is literally in the balance teetering between moral depravity and purity. Read this book and share it with someone who needs to hear its truth.

Pastors Mike and Kathy Hayes
Covenant Church, TX

If you are the parent, grandparent, teacher, aunt or uncle of young children, I urge you to read this book to help prepare for the years ahead. If your children are pre-teens, teens or young adults, this book has the potential to spare them years of grief. I am so excited to introduce this book to you and can’t wait to hear your comments.

Find out more

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Religion: Opiate of the Masses?

January 2nd, 2014 Posted by Susan's Musings 4 comments

Maybe religion is not actually the opiate of the masses.  Maybe rejecting belief in a timeless God is really the opiate of the masses. There are many people who answer, ‘yes,’ to the question of God’s existence, but he (not He) is drawn in their image. Whatever they believe in, whether homosexual marriage, redistribution of wealth or any other idea, they’re sure he supports it. That is a rather comforting view.

You might argue that religious people do the same thing. Since they believe in gender differences and in the life of a pre-born child, they posit that God surely agrees. However, I think there is a very real difference between the two groups. One test boils down to an issue that is given disproportionate importance today—evolution. I have never understood why, when science literacy is so low and when scientific knowledge of practical, applicable fields is so necessary, evolution is the ‘must-teach’ issue. Not only that, but disagreement is treated with the passion of an, admittedly non-violent, Torquemada. Heresy must be rooted out. Not only that, but statements that are clearly unprovable and hence, unscientific, such as firm conviction that there cannot be life after death are among the credos that must be upheld.

Why is this so important? My husband’s great-uncle and Torah teacher, Reb Elya Lopian, was a leading rabbi of the 1900’s. He used to say that for millennia Jews believed that after death they would appear before a Heavenly Court, where a replay of their life would show. At times God would activate the pause button, and to their immense shame and regret, He would ask the equivalent of, “What were you thinking?” Reb Elya continued, “The interesting thing is that once movies were created and people could see technology that allows us to view such a scene, the belief in this after-death movie lessened.”

Forget religion being comforting. I imagine many of us would yearn not to see God’s disappointment in our choices, not to hear a final judgment including angry words we spoke, hurtful accusations we made and foolish or wrong actions we took. The idea of a nothingness after death means that no matter what I do, I am able to move forward without worrying about facing the consequences of my actions in an eternal World to Come.

I understand the desire to cling to a theory of evolution that refutes a God of judgment. Without some spiritual existence after physical death, it is easier to calm consciences and live as we choose. The very folk who believe that often condescendingly tell religious people, “I wish I could have your simple faith.” Perhaps the opposite would be more accurate. Without faith, I can more confidently live life as I choose. Traditional belief is not an opiate; it is a wake-up call.

 

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