26 January 2007

One More Time

Anonymous takes the skeptics to task for rejecting Judaism before having read R' Wasserman's "well known" explanation for why God punishes those that don't believe.

Here's his comment and my response.


>One point I made was that obviously our host has not read thousands of pages of Jewish texts if he never even heard of this famous piece.


Here's the issuesI have I have with this line of thought.


LittleFoxling already stated, in greater detail, everyone challenges the skeptics, "Have you read this", "Have you read that?". Everyone has their own "famous piece". Am I required to have learnt everything? 75%, 50%?

I have read a lot of jewish texts. Is it my fault that in yeshiva they spent days kvetching and kvetching on a single Tosfos? If this R' Elchonon piece of jewish Philosophy is so important to Judaism to retain it's adherents, where is the foresight of the Gedolim to make sure that it's standard in the curiculum?

What would you have said to the skeptics of 100 years ago before R' Wasserman's famous shitckel?

Here are some responses to this same question culled from another Blog

BHB says: A ten year old will readily recognize that there is no Santa, there is no Tooth Fairy and there is no Golem created by the Maharal M'prag. But, the goyish (I hate that word) children's parents cede as soon as the child brings it up. And the 18 year old recognizes that there is no Virgin birth but, being that the emperor has no clothes, continues to believe it. And the Frum kids and adults continue to believe in the Golem, talking fish and flying Tannaim because "hey, anything is possible". So the Yated must finally publish an article debunking the Golem." When your eyes are opened, you need not have gone through every Tosfos, rishonim, & acharon and hashkofa sefer, to realize it's a hodgepodge that's been patched together over millenia. And the closer you look, the worse it is.

DNA: Typical charedi BS. How much of all the books you've mentioned is relevant to whether Orthodox Judaism is true? Rounding down to the nearest one: 0%


Anonymous:
On the contrary, it's because he was lied to that he doesn't know Judaism. If you though you knew biology, but later learned you were actually taught creationism, you don't need to be biologist to know you've been lied to. He could go on to get a phd in biology or become a world class Bible scholar, but he needn't to just know he was lied to.



>Are you serious that someone could reject Judaism without knowing T'nach and Shas? Am I qualified to argue with the theory of relativity?


Do you reject the idea that the sun revolves around the earth? I assume you do. But you don't know the basics. Have you ever read one in-depth text about it to come to that decision. You need not study everything in depth to recognize truth.

You accepted a model of the creation and operation of the universe. Have you studied other models?


So anonymous:


I have studied the basic tenets of our faith, for many years. I have learnt Chumash, Gemara, Rashi, Tosfos, even some Jewish philosophy. And while I have not studied much Jewish Philosophy in a formal environment, I am also exposed to it on a daily basis in Shiurim, speeches, etc. So I know all the basics that are out there. After exposure to science, I also spent some time, though not nearly as much, studying a very different model. A model that questions the historicity & origins of the Torah, a model that uses science and reason to explain the origins of the universe and examines the history of religions.

I simply find that model more believable.

I don't see what's so difficult about that. Do you?

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