11 August 2006

A letter to the editor

Someone sent me two separate Emails, I guess he did not want to post them on the blog for some reason. I think it’s really germane so I’ll post it (without his name).

Here's the first one.

From: -----------------
Date: Aug 9, 2006 3:00 PM
Subject: Hi!
To: BAALHABOS@gmail.com

I was reading over your blog a little more.
The impression I get is something like this:
Your parents and teachers wanted you to be Frum however you never really liked it. Davening is boring. Learning is boring. Shabbos and yom tov - ditto. You liked your parents, you wanted to please them, so you swallowed it. You even read positive books about Yiddishkeit to get more into it. But bottom line, you just never liked this whole thing.
Then a few years ago, you started reading some books which were critical of Yiddishkeit. And suddenly a light went on - "Hey, I really don't need to do all this stuff. There are plenty of brilliant, educated, nice people out there who think it's all crap. Sure, I can continue doing some Jewish things if I feel like it; why not. But that BURDEN is now lifted. It's all really just made up; there's no obligation. Great!!!"
Is this about right? I'm just really curious.
[Of course, I would argue that the opinions of a lot of brilliant, educated, nice people is in and of itself meaningless. How many brilliant people followed Zeus, Jupiter, Jesus, Mohammed, Marx, Lenin, Hitler, Stalin and Mao? Brilliant people can have very poor judgment. I want to judge the facts for myself.]
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The above letter is wrong on many accounts and I’ll address each and every sentence separately.
> Your parents and teachers wanted you to be Frum however you never really liked it.
I’m not sure how you got that impression. On the contrary, if anything I was slightly more frum than my parents. I fit in like a glove, camp, rebbeim, they loved me, I loved them. I never had an aversion to Yiddishkeit until my Epiphany (As Daganev calls it).
 >. Davening is boring. Learning is boring. Shabbos and yom tov - ditto.
I can’t deny that Davening is boring, but I think most FFB’s find it that way. We are all obligated by Judaism to pray. Even most Yirai Shomayim would tell you they’d rather be learning than Davening. Maybe you look forward to repeating the same exact mindless words thrice daily, and listening to the Shats repeat it. But almost no-one else does. So much so, that they had to assur Learning during Chazoras Hashats.
Learning was never boring. Was it on my top list of things that I wanted to do? No, I’d rather watch TV, but I learnt, because that’s the correct thing to do. It wasn’t something that I did to please anyone.

 >You liked your parents, you wanted to please them, so you swallowed it.
Yes, I liked my parents, but being a good yid came naturally.
> You even read positive books about Yiddishkeit to get more into it.
No, I was never into reading books about that stuff. I did the right thing like any good Ben Torah.
 >But bottom line, you just never liked this whole thing.
I had no problems at all and never found anything about it too burdensome. .
> Then a few years ago, you started reading some books which were critical of Yiddishkeit. And suddenly a light went on - "Hey, I really don't need to do all this stuff.
I don't believe that to this date, I've read anything directly critical of Judaism. Maybe you can recommend something?
> There are plenty of brilliant, educated, nice people out there who think it's all crap.
As I stated in one of my posts, all of my feelings that OJ is false, came about indirectly.
Sure, I can continue doing some Jewish things if I feel like it; why not.
Some? You mean ALL!

> But that BURDEN is now lifted.
First accurate thing you stated. But, by remaining FRUM, it just created another, even more serious burden. A burden for which there is no ultimate reward.
> Is this about right? I'm just really curious.
[Of course, I would argue that the opinions of a lot of brilliant, educated, nice people is in and of itself meaningless. How many brilliant people followed Zeus, Jupiter, Jesus, Mohammed, Marx, Lenin, Hitler, Stalin and Mao? Brilliant people can have very poor judgment. I want to judge the facts for myself.]
******************************************************************************
All in all, what the writer is trying to do is to frame my decision making process as a result of a pre-existing dislike for Judaism. Nothing can be further from the truth.
Shortly, in a future post, unless I get sidetracked again, I will prove it.


Are there people like that, who don't believe in OJ because of emotions? Probably, but they would have been gone from Yiddishkeit decades before my age.

And if he’d read my blog, instead of “reading into it” what has not been stated, he would know better.

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    4 Comments:

    At August 11, 2006 2:21 PM, Blogger happywithhislot said...

    Bhb
    Good point re davening.
    However they didn't totally assur learning during davening. They wanted to make sure a Minyan answered amen. If you have more then in some spots you can learn.

    But the point is good. So much so that my rebbi looks for shortest Minyan possible so he can learn. And he is very frum and right wing. He says its no mitzvah to listen to someone else gorgil.

     
    At August 11, 2006 5:44 PM, Blogger Moshe Kappoya said...

    I really gotta disagree. Can't say I enjoy davening, but if someone with a good voice is the chatz, I do enjoy that. (I love to sing.) And sometimes I really do get into it, and I feel that Hashem is listening to me.
    My rav is really into davening. Just to watch him is inspiring. You would not think that in this day and age, one would find a person who davens like that. You just know that he is talking directly to Hashem. He's really awesome, and he comes from LA to boot! Unreal!

     
    At August 11, 2006 6:16 PM, Blogger Irviner Chasid said...

    When I was in camp. people use to stare at me when I davened. When I was older, one young person asked me.. "who are you talking to?"

    Sadly, I've learned to daven now like a yeshivah student, so davening takes 30 mins instead of 2 hours :( its hard to get into it again when you feel preassured for time.

     
    At August 11, 2006 7:21 PM, Blogger Baal Habos said...

    Ok, OK so there are some people that love to Daven.

    Thats all beside the point. The point of the letter was that I have a distaste for all things yiddishkeit so I went out seeking reasons to leave.

     

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