08 August 2006

Why I haven't come out of the closet. (No, not that closet.)

It ain't a bad life - If you can tolerate it


In reality, its quite complex; and it's not always easy to recall the exact sequence of thought processes from several years ago, but here goes.

The truth of the matter is that my public display of religiosity is a combination of three major factors.

1) As Daganev points out, I don't want to rock the boat. I've got a whole life built around Orthodox society, so why change it? But there's a little more to it.

2) Crucial to keeping the status quo, is that I'm more than complacent in that status quo. I'm really happy with most of it.

Think about it; supposedly, most "at risk kids" are that way because of problems in school or family. They don't usually make a reasoned decision that Judaism is false because of Theological reasons; it's just that they don't in one way or another fit in. So they leave to find greener pastures.

On the contrary, I fit in very well, socially, scholastically, emotionally and every other possible way, except for intellectually.

My family life, kids, shul, friends, learning (yes learning), shabbos schedule, interaction with my Gentile co-workers as a God fearing individual, is all by now a deep ingrained way of life. These are not just tolerable. They provide for a major source of satisfaction. Tossing that for some unknown, at my age, is really risky.

Let's put it this way, if I had to find a new community for whatever reason, I'd probably opt for very similar community to the one I'm coming from.

There is definitly sacrifice here. Kosher is a pain, Shabbos can be a pain, Rabbi's are a pain, etc. Davening is a super pain. But there's reward to most of it.

Now before I get to the third major factor there are some minor ones. Among them is a serious character flaw that I have - I care way too much about what people think of me. Another related issue is not wanting to "let down" certain family members. I'm not talking about embarressment that they'd go thru, just simply letting them down of expectations they have of me. It's very similar to me looking for their approval, but not quite.

3) No for the grand finale . I know that OJ is a long chain of mis-steps upon mis-steps. After so many years, and in retrospect this is somewhat of a shock to me, I'm still very much observant even in private.

So why would I come out in public as not religious?

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    47 Comments:

    At August 08, 2006 8:43 PM, Blogger Avi said...

    You said it yourself my friend. Endless hours of davening. Even if you believe in a creator ( sometimes I do and sometimes I dont) How do you make the leap ( and its a very big leap) from God to torah. Nowhere does the torah call for endless hours of davening. Most of what we call Judaism should really be called rabbonism. The rabbonim have made up everything that is udaism today. My favorite question is always the same. If Moshe rabbenu came back today he would not know who these Jewish people are. Practically everything in the torah has been changed. Meanwhile if it makes you happy, keep shukling.

     
    At August 08, 2006 8:47 PM, Blogger Avi said...

    So why would I come out in public as not religious?

    There are other options you know. You dont have to throw out the baby with the bathwater. Many people on the frumskeptics group maintain their Judaism without all the insanities and stupidity that goes with it. I manage to maintain the impression of an Orthodox Jew, without being one.

     
    At August 08, 2006 10:25 PM, Blogger Avi said...

    Avi said...
    Irviner. As I said once to Baal Habos, the truth is supposed to set you free, but freedom is not always so good. It's nice to believe in something. Hashem will reward me if I do whatever it is that he wants me to do. But what happens if one such as me starts to think critically of things? What happens if you manage to lose your belief in somethings? A man without a God and without a country is a lonely man. Perhaps knowing the truth as I see it is not so good. Read this see what you think.

    An atheist/naturalist is reviled because he is the one person willing to state the obvious to those who cannot or will not admit to it. Let’s face facts. The believers, be they Jews, Christians, or Gardnerian Wiccans, in spite of the myriad of rationalizations, justifications, and mind games, continue to replace evidence and reason with ‘faith’. No hard evidence at all. All the atheist does is point out what is readily apparent, and he does so without any mental gymnastics.

    Religions remind me of used-car-type salesmen hawking a product that you really don’t need. The first thing they must do is create that need in the mind of the potential customer. There are any number of ways to accomplish this. The best way is through eliciting fear or inducing hope. If you can convince your customer that living without this particular product could lead to either great suffering or, conversely, great satisfaction, then the transaction is all but closed at that point. Fear and hope are exactly the same phenomena, both being negative and generally useless emotions.


    Outs[poken as I may be, I cannot favor outlawing religious belief or religions. Far from it! There are two reasons for this. First, the truth is that religion as a social function does, at least, espouse morals and ethics that people might not hear about in other venues. One seldom finds such inspiration in movie theatres or on television. Kierkegaard was correct when he bemoaned the state of his generation that “sought inspiration in the theatres, and entertainment in the churches.” For many, church is going to be the only place, unfortunately, that will learn about ‘love thy neighbor’. They may also be listening to a lot of dangerous ideas as well, but for the most part, this atheist can live with things as they are as long as the parishioner takes his ‘love thy neighbor’ seriously enough to forgive my atheism and not burn me at the stake.

    The second reason I would not abolish religion is because I still cherish freedoms and liberties. If we begin to shut down ideas, no matter how disagreeable they may seem, we have already forfeited those freedoms away. In short, the believer is entitled to his or her delusions, the atheist is also welcome to reject it, and reject it loudly if he so wishes. The price of freedom is that we will have to endure the smarmy salesman and have to weed through his sales pitch to discern if, in fact, we actually require this product or not or, if we choose, to evaluate that product based on its merits and probable effectiveness. I wonder if people give as much time to scrutinizing their religious beliefs as they do when buying a used car.

    There is always someone out there who is going to hustle you when you are most vulnerable to his advertising. Remain skeptical. These hucksters are very slick, and you can be sure, the more they talk, the less they really have to sell you. They can market ‘ice to Eskimos’ if they wish, but I’m pretty sure only an Eskimo in the middle of a desert would really need it. I don't imagine Eskimos to be that gullible. So why are we?


    “Skeptical scrutiny is the means, in both science and religion, by which deep insights can be winnowed from deep nonsense.” (Carl Sagan, 1934 - 1996)

    August 08, 2006 2:44 PM

     
    At August 09, 2006 12:23 AM, Blogger happywithhislot said...

    BHB
    I was curious
    When you sit around the shabbos table and a guest tries to impress you with some lame dvar torah. How do you react?
    do you
    a) say, wow its gevaldik!
    b) smile politely
    c) dont even listen and day dream about something else?

    Im ususally a c. not because of skeptism. I just cant get too excited about most people divrei torah. There are people who can make torah as intersting as a good Nova show. But the people giving over most divrei torah think they are saying something profound. My father says, from yeidem pusek mir ken machen ah appeal.

    Now in a skeptics position, it should even be worse. You know what they are saying is BS.
    they may as well be saying something from the Koran, its as meaningful.

    I know this is out of the blue, but it is related to the pending yomim noraim, Please share with us how you approach Yom Kippur.

     
    At August 09, 2006 12:29 AM, Blogger happywithhislot said...

    bhb
    another thought. I obviously dont feel this way, but was wondering what the skeptics who remain frum answer is:

    Some people say, well it doesnt hurt to remain in OJ and basically perpetuate it.

    However, what if OJ is not what God wants and he is keeping us in galus because we are too stubborn to give it up.
    What he wanted was people who wouldnt think about killing people because they clipped their toe nail.
    Or kill gays, or any other crime between man and god.
    He is angry that we are almost like the Taliban.

    And youre sending your kids to continue down that path.

     
    At August 09, 2006 1:45 AM, Blogger Irviner Chasid said...

    Irviner. As I said once to Baal Habos, the truth is supposed to set you free, but freedom is not always so good. It's nice to believe in something, and other long stuff.


    That was all very well written and very thought out, and I am sorry to respond with a short responce, and I am sorry to use an analogy, (I know how skeptics and athiests hate analogies)

    Say you have an innocent child, and you are watching a more adult movie, where a man says , "Going to choke the chicken?" Now the child laughs, and points out to the adults, HAHA, he is going to choke a chicken to death, that is SOOOOO silly! And starts sitting there laughing to no end.

    You, as an adult, also laugh, but for different reasons, and you look at the child and you think "Yes, the child is correct, it is silly, but thats not -really- what is ment, he didn't see the truth behind the reality" And the child sees you laughing and the child thinks he gets the joke. But the reality is, he doesn't.

    That is how I feel about athiests, and the more I hear their arguments and see the facts and learn the more I feel this way.

    And please do not get me wrong, I am not saying that Athiests are children or are lacking any sort of mental capacity. They are just blinding themselves, normally purposfully, to part of themselves and part of the world.

     
    At August 09, 2006 12:51 PM, Blogger Avi said...

    I know this is out of the blue, but it is related to the pending yomim noraim, Please share with us how you approach Yom Kippur.

    Try do daven in a shul that has lots of singing.Either that or cover your head wita the tallis and go to sleep.

     
    At August 09, 2006 1:07 PM, Blogger Avi said...

    And please do not get me wrong, I am not saying that Athiests are children or are lacking any sort of mental capacity. They are just blinding themselves, normally purposfully, to part of themselves and part of the world.

    We are blinding ourselves to the world? Perhaps you are imagining things. Did you ever speak to an angel? Did an angel ever speak to you? Did God ever speak to you? Yeah you and all the nuts in the insane asuylem. The Rebbayim wax eloquent over high and lofty issues.The angels that serve God and their duties. These people are delussional. They have never seen an angel, yet they know their names and their jobs, and what purpose each one serves. And you say that we are blinding ourselves? Tell me my friend, which one of us is crazy?

     
    At August 09, 2006 1:26 PM, Blogger Lakewood Venter said...

    Great post! I could have written much of what you wrote about myself!

     
    At August 09, 2006 1:31 PM, Blogger Avi said...

    Someone got my goat and I just had to share this with you.

    And rabbi Akiva tells you about all his mistakes? Thinking that Bar Kochba was Moshiach was a nice size blunder. It opened up for the Jewish people all kind of Moshiachs from good old Jesus to the nut case in the 18th century whatever his name was. The Jewish people have suffered untold tragedies because of the false Moshiachs. And we still suffer all kind of tragedies today because of what the rebbayim believe. In Lakewood everyone sholuld be learning, poverty stricken or not. Instead of saying to some of these Bochurim, go out get a job, learn something and support your family. They convince them that their job is to stay in yeshiva and warm benches. Tell me what kind of lifestyle they are preparing these people for. What kind of a Jewish world are they leaving to the next generation. Avi

     
    At August 09, 2006 1:41 PM, Blogger Irviner Chasid said...

    Avi, You are nothing but an electronic pulse that happens to think it is self aware and somehow more advanced than a plankton. There is nothing you do that a plankton does not do, however, you just take the long, winding road to go about doing it. And sometimes you even have the chance of hurting another complicated plankton in the process, and the worst part is, you will feel bad about it. In the words of Jack Burden, you are but a "great twitch"

    I however am an eternal being, who has but a short stint of hardwork which I will gain benefit from for the rest of my existance. As an extra bonus, hardwork also helps my plankton self's ideas of what makes it happy, and in such I and my body work together towards a goal that will not only help the people who come after me, and the people around me, but I get the added bonus of having my selfish self get a grand reward aswell.

    What does it matter if I am crazy? My being crazy allows me to do things which your being sane, prohibits you from doing. My craziness allows me to be happy and high 24/7 without ever needing to pay some pusher hard earned money, it comes free, and doesn't even require a time commitment. There is no cost for my craziness. However, if I am correct, then there is a cost to your blindness. So what do I care if you think me crazy or not?

    What does the child care that the adults know he doesn't get the joke?
    Only the adults care if the child gets the joke or not.


    It is funny you bring up Yom Kippur, because Yom Kippur is when I discoverd nonphysical reality.

    My shul has two minyans, I always daven at the more quite one, and I tend to daven on my own, and spend the rest of the time reading books, not necessarily related to Yom Kippur in any direct way.

     
    At August 09, 2006 1:44 PM, Blogger Irviner Chasid said...

    > Thinking that Bar Kochba was Moshiach was a nice size blunder

    How do you know about this blunder? Such self conceited Rabbis who claim to know it all, would quickly cover this up.

    Let me ask you this, why do you even care about the next generation?

     
    At August 09, 2006 2:19 PM, Blogger Baal Habos said...

    Avi, this set of posts is for religion.
    We'll try to get to God in future posts, God willing of course ;)

     
    At August 09, 2006 2:29 PM, Blogger Baal Habos said...

    > BHB
    I was curious
    When you sit around the shabbos table and a guest tries to impress you with some lame dvar torah. How do you react?
    do you
    a) say, wow its gevaldik!
    b) smile politely
    c) dont even listen and day dream about something else?

    > Im ususally a c. not because of skeptism. I just cant get too excited about most people divrei torah. There are people who can make torah as intersting as a good Nova show. But the people giving over most divrei torah think they are saying something profound. My father says, from yeidem pusek mir ken machen ah appeal.


    Happy, your father sounds like my kind of guy.

    However, when I have someone tell me a good Dvar torah, I get into it just like Lakewood Yid or anyones else does. I don't tune it, it might really be good. I like a good vort just like the next guy. It's an intellectual thing, not a religious thing. I hate it though when I get Mussar type of Divrei Torah. And if it's a kvetch Dvar torah, I'm not shy about criticising it. It's not like anythings Torah M'sinai, right?

    >I know this is out of the blue, but it is related to the pending yomim noraim, Please share with us how you approach Yom Kippur.


    Good issue. I think we can address that more fully when the time comes, but I find that in some ways YK is way easier as a skeptic, even though I'm fasting and sitting in Shul all day. When I was ehrlich, there was lots of stress and emotion tied up in YK. Now, its a long boring day.

     
    At August 09, 2006 2:34 PM, Blogger Baal Habos said...

    > Try do daven in a shul that has lots of singing.Either that or cover your head wita the tallis and go to sleep.


    Avi, cute. but the best thing is to go to the shortest minyan possible. Unfortunately I can't do that.

     
    At August 09, 2006 2:34 PM, Blogger Baal Habos said...

    > Some people say, well it doesnt hurt to remain in OJ and basically perpetuate it.

    Happy. I'll get into my take on this in future posts. What is interesting, is I see the same themes coming up in many skeptics.

     
    At August 09, 2006 2:41 PM, Blogger Baal Habos said...

    Lakewood Venter, thanks and welcome. Stick around for my next post, I wonder if that applies to you as well.

    And so far, I'm very surprised at the oilam. No one asked the obvious question.

     
    At August 09, 2006 2:44 PM, Blogger Baal Habos said...

    Irviner,
    > I however am an eternal being,

    How do you know?

     
    At August 09, 2006 2:52 PM, Blogger Irviner Chasid said...

    Irviner,
    > I however am an eternal being,

    How do you know

    Occam's razor


    Either, I am an eternal being, or the alternative given to me, is that "My DNA has implanted in me the idea that the next generation of my species is important, it has also created in me the illusions of free will, and a sense of importance in stucture and order, rather than live and let live, and eat berries and garbage" All this for no real reason, it just happened that way by accident.

     
    At August 09, 2006 2:52 PM, Blogger Irviner Chasid said...

    Oh, and I left out that I question the truths to my existance.

     
    At August 09, 2006 2:53 PM, Blogger Irviner Chasid said...

    And so far, I'm very surprised at the oilam. No one asked the obvious question.

    Avi derailed me a bit from teh point of your post, however, perhaps the answer is also obvious so the question isn't raise? :P

     
    At August 09, 2006 3:57 PM, Blogger happywithhislot said...

    Avi
    "Try do daven in a shul that has lots of singing.Either that or cover your head wita the tallis and go to sleep. "

    Very good.
    I actually found a shul with a very long break, and excellent heimishe baal tefillahs. That and my daf, do the job.

    I also like the idea of having a day to do nothing but contemplate.


    BHB
    re dvar torah. You may run into better dvar torah than i do. Everhear R' Wachsman speak. I used to like him, now I think he is a blowhard. As avi alluded, half the stuff he says is about the koach of this malach and palmaya whatever.

    At to the obvious question:
    Is it why do you fake being frum even in private?

    - Habit?
    - Youre not taking any chances, maybe judiasm is right?
    - once you stop, you can slip up in public?
    - Maybe youre wife has a hidden camera

     
    At August 09, 2006 4:23 PM, Blogger Baal Habos said...

    > Either, I am an eternal being, or the alternative given to me, is that "My DNA has implanted in me the idea that the next generation of my species is important, it has also created in me the illusions of free will, and a sense of importance in stucture and order, rather than live and let live, and eat berries and garbage" All this for no real reason, it just happened that way by accident.


    IC, you sort of lost me.

    Why is the former more likely under Occams razor?

    I don't see how Occams razor anserws the question. You don't know. You're just assuming everything. And again, I'm not really addressing God as an issue, just Judaism.

     
    At August 09, 2006 4:23 PM, Blogger Baal Habos said...

    Happy,
    > At to the obvious question:
    Is it why do you fake being frum even in private?


    Bingo. There are several reasons and it's for another post. Interestingly, some of the reasons don't apply anymore, so who knows how things end up.

     
    At August 09, 2006 4:27 PM, Blogger Irviner Chasid said...

    IC, you sort of lost me.

    Why is the former more likely under Occams razor?

    I don't see how Occams razor anserws the question. You don't know. You're just assuming everything. And again, I'm not really addressing God as an issue, just Judaism.

    How do you know you arn't just some brain in a jar and everything about you is the outcome of a sophisticated computer program?


    Of all the theologies and religions and philosophies I have studied, only Judaism to me, has an answer to the ultimate question of why not to commit suicide. To put it in the most harsh of terms.

    In not so bland terms, only Judaism has a good answer as to why the physical world exists.

    I sadly was not able to come to this answer through "normal" day school or Yeshivah education, but only through more Kabbalistic authors. Even though the answer is midly hinted to in the quote "This world is a hallway"

     
    At August 09, 2006 4:37 PM, Blogger Avi said...

    Avi, cute. but the best thing is to go to the shortest minyan possible. Unfortunately I can't do that.


    Why not? In Boro Park there are many shuls. Find one that davens faster. Chasidish place on 18th ave by 50th. Used to daven there for Yom Tov. Start at eight out by 12

     
    At August 09, 2006 4:48 PM, Blogger Avi said...

    That was all very well written and very thought out, and I am sorry to respond with a short responce, and I am sorry to use an analogy, (I know how skeptics and athiests hate analogies)


    Irviner. I didnt write that. I plagerized it from someone else. But let me ask you. When you went to sleep last night, do you remember anything? I went to sleep and I woke up this morning without knowing anything. Sleep is what one sixtieth of death? You may be an eternal being, or you may not be. And if you are an eternal being, so am I. And so is everyone else, without necessarily being Jewish or anything else.

     
    At August 09, 2006 5:02 PM, Blogger happywithhislot said...

    Avi
    I used to live in boro park also.
    Ever daven in crown of Israel on 18th and 56st?

     
    At August 09, 2006 5:04 PM, Blogger Baal Habos said...

    Irviner,

    > Of all the theologies and religions and philosophies I have studied, only Judaism to me, has an answer to the ultimate question of why not to commit suicide.

    Another thought I had intended to post about, but it's out of sequence from my personal metamorphasis. In a nutshell, I don't see millions of atheists jumping off the roof.



    > In not so bland terms, only Judaism has a good answer as to why the physical world exists.

    Every religion would profess that.

    But lets hear your thoughts,

    1) why does the physical world exist?
    2) How does Judasism know that?


    > I sadly was not able to come to this answer through "normal" day school or Yeshivah education, but only through more Kabbalistic authors.

    Which means it's not a rational answer.

     
    At August 09, 2006 5:06 PM, Blogger Baal Habos said...

    Avi,

    > Why not? In Boro Park there are many shuls.

    Maybe I don't live in BP?


    > Find one that davens faster.

    Maybe I can't because I'm the Baal Tefilla in my shul?

     
    At August 09, 2006 6:22 PM, Blogger Moshe Kappoya said...

    I've been trying to follow this thread, and I must admit I'm lost.

    No offense, but I just don't get it.
    I really can't understand what the problem is. You act frum, but don't really believe it. So what?!?!
    You do what you gotta do, end of story. Who says it requires deep kavonos? When I shake my lulev the only thing I'm thinking about is which direction comes next? No deep thoughts, I'm not into kabbalah. When I put on tephelin, I don't think about all the shaymos and significance of each parsha. I just do it quickly so that I can catch up with the chazan before borchu. Does that make a simple Jew? So be it. Will I be punished for not performing mitzvos in the best possible way? Hey, tough! The way I figure it, anyone that remains frum (in any form) in today's world deserves Olam Habbah. (Trust me, I've been to the edge, so I know what I'm talking about.)

    As far as davening, that's for your own benefit. Ask Hashem what you need, he provides. (of course if you ask for dumb stuff, he ignores you. If your kid would ask you for drugs would you give it to him?)
    Don't feel like davening? Don't. No sweat.

    So maybe someone can explain to what you all are "skeptical" about.

    Maybe I can't because I'm the Baal Tefilla in my shul?
    For the minyan's sake, I hope not. If your heart is not in it, it's just not the same.

     
    At August 09, 2006 9:06 PM, Blogger Baal Habos said...

    MK, you mean even if I don't believe in Torah Misinai, I'm getting schar? Or in Yetsias Mitsraim, or any of the other Ikkarim? Well that would be nice!
    (but where exactly am I getting this schar, in an Olam Haba that I don't believe in?) But I don't think that's the party line. Try telling that to your Rav, see if he lets you have an Aliya or Daven Far dem Amud. You'd be ostracised.

    > Will I be punished for not performing mitzvos in the best possible way? Hey, tough!


    If you're really Frum you would be worried Messilas Yesharim "Shekul echad nichve Mchupas Chaveiro", everyone suffers the shame of his neighbors (better) schar in Olam Haba.


    >For the minyan's sake, I hope not. If your heart is not in it, it's just not the same.


    It wouldn't be the worst thing, weren't there Kohannim Gedolim that were Tsedukkim?

    But rest assured, I don't daven far dem amud on Yomim Noraim. On the other hand, you really don't know; your baal tefilla may be just like me.

     
    At August 09, 2006 9:15 PM, Blogger Irviner Chasid said...

    >Another thought I had intended to post about, but it's out of sequence from my personal metamorphasis. In a nutshell, I don't see millions of atheists jumping off the roof.



    > In not so bland terms, only Judaism has a good answer as to why the physical world exists.

    Every religion would profess that.

    But lets hear your thoughts,

    1) why does the physical world exist?
    2) How does Judasism know that?


    > I sadly was not able to come to this answer through "normal" day school or Yeshivah education, but only through more Kabbalistic authors.

    Which means it's not a rational answer.


    How interesting, I said the exact same thing in two different ways and you have two completely different responces to it.

    What does people having a sense of self preservation have to do with religious truths? THey don't care why they have that feeling of self preservation, they just do.


    How, does the fact that most jewish schools don't teach you the deeper things in life mean that its not rational? My formal education never taught me about Hawking's book, does that mean his book is irrational?

    The answer is not simple to explain, I have seen a few people dedicate about 300 pages to the topic in a single book.

    But the basic answer is like this. In a purely spiritual world, ideas come into proximity of each other. Two things are -close- if they are similar. However, in the physical world, things can be close even if they are worlds apart. This is a neccesity for the nature of infinite possiblities and infinite actions and infinite relationships to be had. The physical world is "the point" and the spiritual worlds exist only so that the physical world can work. You can not get close to G-d in the spirtual world untill you act properly in the physical world, because otherwise there is nothing similar between the ideas to get closeness to happen.

    All the other systems I have read say that upon death, you either go to the good place or the bad place, you get rewarded or you get punished. But what then is the point of this existance? What is the point of my existance once I die?

    In Judaism, once you die, you sit in your place untill the ressurection of the dead, when the physical world achieves the perfection that it is suppose to attain, so that everything that was far apart from eachother in the spiritual worlds, can now mingle and interact and become even more perfect by thier closeness in physciality to eachother.

    This world is a hallway, it lets us reach and connect our goals, it is what allows each room to be connected to eachother. It is the preperation chamber, for if you are not prepared then there is nothing to do in the next room.


    I doubt that makes sense to anyone. But oh well.

     
    At August 09, 2006 10:43 PM, Blogger Moshe Kappoya said...

    Now I'm really confused!
    PLEASE clarify for us (me) what you do and don't believe.
    A. Hashem
    B. Hashem created the world
    C. Torah is the word of Hashem
    D. Reward and punishment is from Hashem
    E. Judaism as we know it today is the word Hashem (OK, this is a trick question)
    F. All of the above
    G. None of the above

    No beating around the bush with longwinded pshyco babble! Just Yes/No please.
    We can debate the details later.

     
    At August 09, 2006 11:03 PM, Blogger Irviner Chasid said...

    Me? F. But some wouldn't like my explanation of E

     
    At August 09, 2006 11:17 PM, Blogger Avi said...

    happywithhislot said...
    Avi
    I used to live in boro park also.
    Ever daven in crown of Israel on 18th and 56st?


    It is so many years ago, who remembers. Now I live in Monsey and visit the 5 towns periodically

     
    At August 09, 2006 11:17 PM, Blogger Avi said...

    happywithhislot said...
    Avi
    I used to live in boro park also.
    Ever daven in crown of Israel on 18th and 56st?


    It is so many years ago, who remembers. Now I live in Monsey and visit the 5 towns periodically

     
    At August 09, 2006 11:53 PM, Blogger Baal Habos said...

    MK,

    A. Hashem - I don't see why not
    B. Hashem created the world - I don't see why not
    C. Torah is the word of Hashem - No.
    D. Reward and punishment is from Hashem. I don't know
    E. Judaism as we know it today is the word Hashem (OK, this is a trick question) - No
    F. All of the above
    G. None of the above

     
    At August 10, 2006 2:03 AM, Blogger Irviner Chasid said...

    Bh, I really hope when you said you were the baal Tephilah, you ment as some role like the Gaabi and not the Chazan. Otherwise you are really doing your minyan a disservice.

     
    At August 10, 2006 10:30 AM, Blogger Baal Habos said...

    IC,
    > Bh, I really hope when you said you were the baal Tephilah,

    you missed my reply at 9:06 PM above.

     
    At August 10, 2006 2:15 PM, Blogger Irviner Chasid said...

    Ah.

    Well in my shul when I am asked to daven, if my mind is on other things, I normally decline.

     
    At August 10, 2006 3:31 PM, Blogger happywithhislot said...

    A. Hashem - Yes
    B. Hashem created the world - Yes
    C. Torah is the word of Hashem - Not all of it. Even the gemera says at least some of it was written by man.
    D. Reward and punishment is from Hashem.
    Unsure. Do you mean in this world, or the next? I think hishtadlus plays a bigger role in reward and punishment.
    E. Judaism as we know it today is the word Hashem (OK, this is a trick question) - Define "WE"
    F. All of the above
    G. None of the above

     
    At August 10, 2006 3:36 PM, Blogger happywithhislot said...

    BHB
    "But rest assured, I don't daven far dem amud on Yomim Noraim. On the other hand, you really don't know; your baal tefilla may be just like me."

    Believe me, probably worse.
    I have seen Liars, Cheats, Disbarred Lawyers, Crooks, Wife Abusers, Child Molestors, and other Convicted Felons daven for the amud, some during the yamim noraim.
    They know they are guilty, and so does everyone else, but the game must go on like nobody knows.

    BHB tefillos are much preferred if he is an honest, decent human being.
    Who cares if he doesnt believe. You cant make someone believe. Dont we hope that one day we will be zoche to emunah sheleimah?
    Except for commited Baalei Tshuva, I would venture to guess a significant portion of frum jews dont think about god for a second.
    At least BHB does.

     
    At August 10, 2006 3:37 PM, Blogger happywithhislot said...

    I also remember in my shul, you couldnt daven for amud on rosh hashana and yom kippur if you didnt have a beard.
    Now isnt that just a bunch of BS!

     
    At August 10, 2006 5:13 PM, Blogger Baal Habos said...

    Happy, If I ever need a tsenter for a minyan, you know where to find me.

     
    At August 10, 2006 11:21 PM, Blogger Moshe Kappoya said...

    BHB - Thanks for your answers. I have to think about it.

    Happy -
    D. Both. What does hishtadlus have to with it?
    E. "We" means you.
    You must daven in a chasidish shtebel. They have some strange rules. And yes, some of he people that dave for the aumed shouldn't be allowed to, but we hope that they have or will do tshuva. I put myself in that category, but I was a cheyuv and could not decline to daven.
    BTW, I think about Hashem at least three times a day.

    Avi - I know that shul in BP, fun place, you can never come late! LOL

     
    At August 11, 2006 2:33 PM, Blogger happywithhislot said...

    Moshe
    You have to contribute to get reward. Lazyness is paid back and perceived as punishment.
    If you work hard, you get rewarded, and will percieve that from hashem.

    Now if you mean hashem making you sick or healthy, some of that is related to hishtadlis as well.

     

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