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Greetings, Hebrews!

Discussion in 'Judaism DIR' started by JonM, Jan 16, 2006.

  1. JonM

    JonM Member

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    I'm glad you thought so. I was beginning to wonder why the theological discussions I've been involved in for the last few days have become so tense, and that's when the hints of arrogance (and not just rhetorical arrogance but, like, bigtime, universal, heretical arrogance) began to emerge.

    Now that you're here, I'd like to know what you think about the Torah. I can guess, based on your approach to religion, which you've made very clear, but I'm sure there's something I don't know about the moral component of your beliefs.
     
  2. Deut 13:1

    Deut 13:1 Well-Known Member

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    Very, very, very interesting post. :)

    I hope you don't mind if I respond after Shabbas? Only 2 hours left before Shabbas and I need to do a couple things first.
     
  3. Jayhawker Soule

    Jayhawker Soule <yawn> ignore </yawn>
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    You want to know my views on the Torah because there's something you don't know about the moral component of my beliefs? Sorry, JonM, but that impressed me as a rather odd statement. :)

    I believe that the Torah is a remarkable human document. I wrote elsewhere:
    The Tanach, however, is a fascinating tapestry of myth, folklore, propaganda, law, ethics and poetry. It is also much like a core sample of a remarkable Syro-Palestinian culture, with each strata telling its story to all who choose to read with lenses clear of dogma. Finally, it is the codification of the Exodus/Conquest narrative - the brilliant foundation for a new ethos and ethic - which give us, for example, Leviticus 19:32-37.

    So, when looking at the current genocide in Darfur, we are cautioned not only to love our neighbor as ourself, but to also acknowledge a central and abiding kinship with the victims, as if we too were oppressed in the land of Egypt. In fact, there are two different possible readings of Leviticus 19:18
    1. love thy neighbor as thyself, and
    2. love thy neighbor - s/he is like you
    It's quite a book.​
    See also ..... but I still don't know if that tells you something you don't know about the moral component of my beliefs. ;)
     
  4. JonM

    JonM Member

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    Of course! !&#1513;&#1489;&#1514; &#1513;&#1500;&#1493;&#1501;

    I'm about to be off, myself.
    Well, I guess it's understandable that you see my statement is odd, but the reason I brought it up is because we were discussing divine law, and the Torah as a prescription of morality.

    Either way, though, it is fascinating for anthropological reasons.
     
  5. Avi

    Avi Member

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    Tov me'od! If you ever have questions, don't be afraid to ask the Jewish community here. I would be honored to study alongside you, JonM. I personally am studying to actually convert to Orthodox Judaism, and that is probably why I subscribe to the Orthodox Halakha. Who knows, perhaps baal teshuva is in your future.
     
  6. JonM

    JonM Member

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    Well, this feels better.:D

    Where are you in the process? What faith are you coming from?
     
  7. Avi

    Avi Member

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    I haven't actually contacted the Bet Din, yet, so I just study Torah and other Judaism specific books. I will start the process once I am out of my parent's house and living on my own in college.

    I come from no particular faith. My father is Christian, but I never really went to church. I suppose you could of called me a deist.
     
  8. Ody

    Ody Well-Known Member

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    Glad to see another jew on the forums although we may disagree wtih certian beliefs (im a chabbad/conservative jew myself) i also agree that reconstructionists should have a forum as well..
     
  9. Deut 13:1

    Deut 13:1 Well-Known Member

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    Well, I've put off responding to this long enough. Here I go... )(

    The overall problem with reformed/reconstructionalist judaism from my perspective you just outlined; I put it in the bold.

    WHat you're saying is that it must come from outside of yourself, which I agree w/. However Reformed and reconstructionalist from my perspective don't. It's like if you ask them a question they have nothing but themselves to base the answer off of. Is the Torah divine? Sort of, maybe, possibly, who knows, not really. Did G-d give the Torah to Moses in the desert? Sort of, possibly, probably not. Are the 10 commandments obligatory? Sort of, not really, more like suggestions, kind of like guidelines.

    There is an expression in Yiddish that you might be familiar with: "nisht a hin, nisht a her". It means: "neither here nor there". And don't take offense to this, but that's how I feel about the Reform and Reconstructionalist movement in my opinion.

    :clap

    I'm a year older.

    Where do you plan on studying then?

    Well, I hope I didn't scare you away from Judaism, I was mostly just trying to get you to realize that in reformed judaism and reconstructionalist the relationship w/ HaShem is on your terms, not His. And that isn't real Judaism from my perspective.

    With that, laila tov.
     
  10. JonM

    JonM Member

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    Well, here's a distinction I think you have to make. What you said certainly applies to me, but it isn't fair to apply it to Reconstructionists in general (I can't speak for Reform Jews). I say that because most Reconstructionists I know are openly agnostic, and if they can't be sure of the existence of God, how can they be sure of Jewish law? I think that's a fine place to be. I was there for a long time, but I'm not anymore. I believe fully in God, so therefore I have to bow to authority outside myself. But I would say that I differ from most Reconstructionists I know in that regard.

    Well, the Judaic Studies department here at Brown is very good. I'm currently planning on majoring in Religious Studies and then going on to get a specifically Jewish education, but most JS classes are cross-registered in RS, so I will be focusing on Judaism.
     
  11. Avi

    Avi Member

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    Brown? Wow, that's quite the school.
     
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  12. JonM

    JonM Member

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    So far it has lived up to its reputation. I'm really enjoying it.
     
  13. Avi

    Avi Member

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    I'm shooting for UCLA in the fall. There I can really flourish as a Jew, but I must also prepare myself for UC-Santa Barbara or UC-Santa Cruz...

    I'm the BEST of students, but I am up there--certainly not Brown quality, though.
     
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