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The Almighty is Unjustifiable
Jewish World Review ^ | 4/16/'10 | Rabbi Nathan Lopes Cardozo

Posted on 04/16/2010 1:24:20 PM PDT by Zionist Conspirator

To believe in G-d is to believe not only that there is ultimate meaning to our existence but also that this meaning is completely beyond our comprehension. We do not know why G-d created the universe and man; to know that, we would have to be G-d. We would have to abandon the human condition and confront a metaphysical reality that our brains are not equipped to absorb. A reality that asks us to do the impossible — to utterly reject our thoughts, go beyond the shore of our reason and enter into the unfeasible situation in which G-d's thoughts become ours.

As long as we do not know why G-d created anything, we cannot deal with the question why G-d allows, or even causes, so much pain to be inflicted on us. Only if we would know why the world was created would it be possible to see if there is a need for pain and if it could be justified.

(Excerpt) Read more at jewishworldreview.com ...


TOPICS: General Discusssion; Judaism; Moral Issues; Theology
KEYWORDS: gd; humanreason; morality; torah
Excellent article.
1 posted on 04/16/2010 1:24:20 PM PDT by Zionist Conspirator
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To: Zionist Conspirator

Article stated: To believe in G-d is to believe not only that there is ultimate meaning to our existence but also that this meaning is completely beyond our comprehension.

I might restate that last phrase to “this meaning is beyond our complete comprehension.”

Otherwise, meaning is meaningless...because completely uncomprehended.


2 posted on 04/16/2010 1:44:51 PM PDT by srweaver (Never Forget the Judicial Homicide of Terri Schiavo)
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To: Zionist Conspirator

We know what we do not know. Got it.


3 posted on 04/16/2010 1:49:59 PM PDT by Misterioso
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To: Zionist Conspirator

Article stated: To live a life of Torah is to live a life of the greatest nobility in the presence of G-d, fully aware that the purpose of life is to live the ultimate mysterious “why” while never understanding it. Therein lies its meaning.

I think trying to live a “noble” life without any concept of “why” is an exercise in futility.

Seems the concept of love (or hesed), the faithful, covenant keeping love of God is ignored in this article.

Some things God has revealed, but not all...Deuteronomy 29:29 - The secret things belong to the LORD our God, but the things revealed belong to us and to our children forever, that we may follow all the words of this law.


4 posted on 04/16/2010 1:53:48 PM PDT by srweaver (Never Forget the Judicial Homicide of Terri Schiavo)
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To: Misterioso; srweaver

We know what we do not know. Got it.

I have this idea, but I cannot explain it, and you wouldn’t understand it if I could. But I know it’s right, so you ought to believe it.

;>)

Hank


5 posted on 04/16/2010 2:00:24 PM PDT by Hank Kerchief
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To: Zionist Conspirator

Yep, seems like nonsense to me, but then so did modern physics. I can grasp just enough of it to realize that it’s probably true, and I’m an idiot.


6 posted on 04/16/2010 2:05:54 PM PDT by throwback ( The object of opening the mind, as of opening the mouth, is to shut it again on something solid)
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To: Zionist Conspirator
We do not know why G-d created the universe and man; to know that, we would have to be G-d.

Let me help you out rabbi ... Psalm 8

O LORD, our Lord,
how majestic is your name in all the earth!
You have set your glory
above the heavens.

From the lips of children and infants
you have ordained praise
because of your enemies,
to silence the foe and the avenger.

When I consider your heavens,
the work of your fingers,
the moon and the stars,
which you have set in place,

what is man that you are mindful of him,
the son of man that you care for him?

You made him a little lower than the heavenly beings
and crowned him with glory and honor.

You made him ruler over the works of your hands;
you put everything under his feet:

all flocks and herds,
and the beasts of the field,

the birds of the air,
and the fish of the sea,
all that swim the paths of the seas.

O LORD, our Lord,
how majestic is your name in all the earth!

7 posted on 04/16/2010 2:08:03 PM PDT by tx_eggman (Liberalism is only possible in that moment when a man chooses Barabas over Christ.)
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To: Hank Kerchief; Misterioso; srweaver
We know what we do not know. Got it.

I have this idea, but I cannot explain it, and you wouldn’t understand it if I could. But I know it’s right, so you ought to believe it.

;>)

Hank

The article is not an argument for believing in G-d. It simply points out that for those who do believe in G-d, His ways are beyond human understanding and beyond human "justification."

Those who do not believe in G-d, on the other hand, have a different problem: how anything can be labeled "objectively evil" in the absence of a Creator and his unknown purposes.

8 posted on 04/16/2010 2:13:46 PM PDT by Zionist Conspirator (Kol-hamishkav 'asher yishkav `alayv hazav yitma'; vekhol-hakeli 'asher-yeshev `alayv yitma'.)
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To: Hank Kerchief
1. Nothing Exists.

2. Providing something does exist, its nature is ultimately infinite and can not be comprehended.

3. Providing something exists and that you could understand it, you could never explain it: there aren't enough words.

- Jainist saying

9 posted on 04/16/2010 2:14:28 PM PDT by Psycho_Bunny (Socialism is for people who've given up.)
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To: Zionist Conspirator
Why does the author write G-d and not God? It's not like God is a long word. I just don't get it.
10 posted on 04/16/2010 2:15:58 PM PDT by chaos_5
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To: chaos_5
Why does the author write G-d and not God? It's not like God is a long word. I just don't get it.

You've been on FR for six years and you don't know?

11 posted on 04/16/2010 2:17:35 PM PDT by Zionist Conspirator (Kol-hamishkav 'asher yishkav `alayv hazav yitma'; vekhol-hakeli 'asher-yeshev `alayv yitma'.)
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To: Zionist Conspirator

I’ve never understood that. It’s an honest question.


12 posted on 04/16/2010 2:21:34 PM PDT by chaos_5
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To: wideawake
Pinging you just to get your reaction to the article.

Unfortunately, whatever you say is likely to be the first and only serious response on this thread. I sincerely did not foresee that it would become idiot bait.

13 posted on 04/16/2010 2:23:46 PM PDT by Zionist Conspirator (Kol-hamishkav 'asher yishkav `alayv hazav yitma'; vekhol-hakeli 'asher-yeshev `alayv yitma'.)
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To: Zionist Conspirator

Well, it’s certainly from the Jewish perspective. The Christian perspective is that we were made to know and love God. Whereas the “annointing” of a Jew with the Spirit of the Lord is the occasional circumstance, the Christian (through the right of Confirmation) receives the indwelling of the Holy Spirit which (if developed) allows a much deeper understanding of the purpose of life. Not a criticism here, just pointing out the differences in perspective.


14 posted on 04/16/2010 2:34:25 PM PDT by Constitutions Grandchild
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To: srweaver
I don't want to bring down everyone’s wrath on the Rabbi but he and the Catechism of the Catholic Church are in agreement on this. The Catechism states: “God's truth is his wisdom, which commands the whole created order and governs the world. God, who alone made heaven and earth, can alone impart true knowledge of every created thing in relation to himself.”

Furtherm St. Bonaventure explains that God created all things “not to increase his glory, but to show it forth and to communicate it”, for God has no other reason for creating than his love and goodness: “Creatures came into existence when the key of love opened his hand.”

15 posted on 04/16/2010 2:41:26 PM PDT by Natural Law
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To: chaos_5

My understanding is that the Jewish people (or some of them) consider God’s name (Hebrew consonants transliterated YHWH or JHVH, where some translations get Yahweh or Jehovah) too holy to say ... so they don’t. I assume G-d is a continuation of this tradition intended to show respect for God.


16 posted on 04/16/2010 2:47:24 PM PDT by srweaver (Never Forget the Judicial Homicide of Terri Schiavo)
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To: Zionist Conspirator; Buggman; P-Marlowe

Dear Rabbi,

“If you have seen Me, you have seen the Father.” “I and the Father are One.”

Now we know, even as we ourselves are known.

“Let everything that hath breath, praise the Lord.”

Thanks,

Xzins


17 posted on 04/16/2010 2:52:30 PM PDT by xzins (Retired Army Chaplain and Proud of It! Those who support our troops pray for their victory!)
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To: Constitutions Grandchild

I think the book of Job makes it clear that we are not, in this life, to understand everything that is going on. Certainly we are not to judge God in terms of our own feeble human understanding. Christians, however, have seen some of what God is like in Jesus Christ: extravagantly, sacrificially loving and willing to forgive. The Christian worldview is completely consistent with that of the OT book of Job. God is not willing that anyone should perish, but will one day make everything right and reward the faithful.


18 posted on 04/16/2010 2:53:03 PM PDT by hellbender
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To: Zionist Conspirator

I don’t know if you consider people having epistemological concerns “idiot bait.”

I happen to disagree with some specific statements, that the author made, in the article you posted.

If you would like to address those, fine, perhaps we can have a discussion. Otherwise, you might want to find a group who always agrees with your views.


19 posted on 04/16/2010 3:07:00 PM PDT by srweaver (Never Forget the Judicial Homicide of Terri Schiavo)
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To: Zionist Conspirator

“It simply points out that for those who do believe in G-d, His ways are beyond human understanding and beyond human ‘justification.’”

How about when God clearly explains Himself, and why He is doing what He is doing...is that beyond our comprehension?

Deuteronomy 9:5 Not for thy righteousness, or for the uprightness of thine heart, dost thou go to possess their land: but for the wickedness of these nations the LORD thy God doth drive them out from before thee, and that he may perform the word which the LORD sware unto thy fathers, Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.

Actually, the whole chapter is God explaining “why.”


20 posted on 04/16/2010 3:15:31 PM PDT by srweaver (Never Forget the Judicial Homicide of Terri Schiavo)
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To: srweaver

Thank you! That makes sense.


21 posted on 04/16/2010 3:18:01 PM PDT by chaos_5
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To: Natural Law

Sorry but you lost me.

I took the one (rabbi) to say the “meaning of our existence is completely beyond our comprehension,” while the other (Catholic catechism/Bonaventure) says “God shows forth and communicates His glory” and “He alone can impart true knowledge of the relationship of His creatures to Himself.”

I don’t disagree with the latter, as my knowledge of God which is real, though nor exhaustive, depends on Him giving me the ability to live and reason coupled with Him choosing to reveal Himself to me in ways I can understand.


22 posted on 04/16/2010 3:26:00 PM PDT by srweaver (Never Forget the Judicial Homicide of Terri Schiavo)
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To: chaos_5

It is a sign of respect.


23 posted on 04/16/2010 3:33:24 PM PDT by nolongerademocrat ("Before you ask G-d for something, first thank G-d for what you already have." B'rachot 30b)
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To: Zionist Conspirator

If the Rabbi’s point is to stand in awe at the ineffability of God, I’m with him.
In the article, the Rabbi says we don’t know why God created the world.
I’ll see him Isa 45:18
For thus saith the LORD that created the heavens; God himself that formed the earth and made it; he hath established it, he created it not in vain, he formed it to be inhabited...

And raise him Hbr 1:2
Hath in these last days spoken unto us by [his] Son, whom he hath appointed heir of all things, by whom also he made the worlds
and
Hbr 11:3
Through faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the word of God, so that things which are seen were not made of things which do appear.

I don’t think the worlds God made are uninhabited either...I guess that’s one reason why we need eternity. Peace!


24 posted on 04/16/2010 3:39:44 PM PDT by spankalib
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To: Zionist Conspirator
Excellent article.

Yes, it is.

One of the things I respect the most about my Hebrew friends is their ability to let the mystery of the Father, and His works BE a mystery. It is a lesson that is hard to learn in the Christian community, where many faithful are not content to do so, defining Him, and that which we do not know, in ways which are not necessarily true, and cannot be proven.

As an aside though, The article suggests that "Only if we would know why the world was created would it be possible to see if there is a need for pain and if it could be justified."

I am not so sure that this is a proper focus, or perhaps it is too broad. The presence of pain is not necessarily a bad thing... Not to put too existential a spin on it, But one of the few shrinks that I have respect for is Viktor Frankl... His "Man's Search for Meaning" is probably the finest work I have ever read wrt pain, suffering, and sorrow.

To strive is probably the single most powerful thing in Man's nature - What is the worth of endeavor without pain? the reward, the success, the reason is in the overcoming.

It is one of the purest things on earth.

25 posted on 04/16/2010 3:49:29 PM PDT by roamer_1 (Globalism is just Socialism in a business suit)
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To: Zionist Conspirator

Why did God create all things? For his own glory.


26 posted on 04/16/2010 3:57:39 PM PDT by irishtenor (Tag line is on vacation.)
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To: Zionist Conspirator
... why G-d allows, or even causes, so much pain to be inflicted on us.

God hasn't inflicted anything on us He hasn't inflicted on himself multiple times over. We can't possible understand the depths of giving up being God and suffering the utter humiliation of dying on a cross at the hands of evil people who He wants to save.

27 posted on 04/16/2010 5:45:38 PM PDT by HarleyD
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To: HarleyD

Nor can we understand the depths of God’s love — but we can enjoy “swimming” in it/Him.


28 posted on 04/16/2010 6:32:02 PM PDT by srweaver (Never Forget the Judicial Homicide of Terri Schiavo)
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To: Zionist Conspirator

For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us. (Rom 8:18)

We speak of God’s hidden and mysterious wisdom that God decided to use for our glory long before the world began.


29 posted on 04/16/2010 7:24:09 PM PDT by Delta 21 (If you cant tell if I'm being sarcastic...maybe I'm not.)
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To: chaos_5
It is a sign of respect, but I think it's more than that to. I'm sure somebody will jump on me, maybe an orthodox Jew or something, but I think its because if you read scripture G_d's name is really not known. I think the ancient Jews wrote it as something like YHWY and people later filled in some vowels but nobody knows if they're right. So kind of in keeping with that vein in modern English I guess we follow the same pattern because the Lord's name is so holy a man cannot speak it. I started following this convention too, but I think it comes from reading a lot of scripture.
30 posted on 04/16/2010 8:02:06 PM PDT by throwback ( The object of opening the mind, as of opening the mouth, is to shut it again on something solid)
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To: Zionist Conspirator
M-Theory

Praised be God!

31 posted on 04/17/2010 9:36:39 AM PDT by onedoug
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To: Psycho_Bunny; xzins; Zionist Conspirator; P-Marlowe
Jainist saying

Hey, I'm a Jaynist too!

He robbed from the rich
And he gave to the poor
Stood up to the man
And gave him what for
Our love for him now
Ain't hard to explain
The hero of Canton
The man they call Jayne.

32 posted on 04/17/2010 9:50:42 AM PDT by Buggman (HebrewRoot.com - Baruch haBa b'Shem ADONAI!)
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