Sunday, May 4, 2008

Is my grandmother going to hell?

Lately I've been thinking about the concept of heaven/hell. I was thinking about how Jews believe in levels. And I also thought about how Jews, generally, believe that each time one does a mitzvah, they have another malach that advocates on their behalf, so that they get to a higher level, or spend less time in the other, lower level, or something like that.

Basically, what supposedly happens is that Hashem shows like a video recording of your life, and you feel ashamed, and then he sends you down to gohenim, or something like that. Again, I'm not sure, and with each person that gives a shuir on this, I get confused, and completely disinterested.

So anyway, the other day, I was thinking about my grandmother. Exclusively about her and whether or not she will go to hell. I love my grandmother dearly, and I think she is a good person, and though she isn't the only person in the family who isn't frum the thought of her eventually going to some low level in olam haba tends to bother me.

My grandma is a good lady. She isn't frum. My rabbi made a huge shuir on how if someone isn't frum, but they didn't have opportunity to learn how to be frum, they will not be punished for it, because it is not their fault; however, if they live in Brooklyn, where its super easy for them to learn, it is their fault, and they will be punished for not doing mitzhos because they chose not to learn, and they had opportunity too.

My grandma lives in Brooklyn, and she chooses not to learn. Some might say "well, you can't teach an old dog new tricks, and since your granny came from the USSR, she'll be ok", but began thinking...

1) I know people who went frum in their old age

2) Being frum isn't for everyone. As "ideal" as this may seem to the average frummy, not everyone can, nor should put themselves through a lifestyle of restrictions, and annoying frum people who compete on who can limit their food options more (those who eat only cholov yisroal, pas yisroal, kemach yoshon etc.).

3) why does an idiot, who never learned, but was "fortunate" enough to be ffb, get any schar at all, if all it is to him is blind following of a lifestyle he happened to be born into? Why does a person, who chooses to follow their lifestyle not get rewarded, just because their lifestyle happens to not be the frum one?

Then there are people who are frum who gain tons of brownie points doing mitzvahs but in reality, they aren't really good people, they're morons.

Like for example, the guys who seek prostitutes? They do countless numbers of mitzvos yet they do one thing, that stands out, that is really bad. Does Hashem give angels that may be better or worse advocates for the good deeds, based on the evil?

There are so many frum people who are simply pains in the ass. They wreek a lot of havoc, yet they're frum. Why should they go to heaven, and not my grandma? Or does my grandma go to heaven and they have no zchar at all? OR is there a balance and all the black/white BS we learn in BY and in shuirim all...well...BS?

I vote for BS, because well...B"Y has a way with scare tactics...but it still leaves me wondering, will my grandma go to hell?

49 comments:

Orthoprax said...

And Christians say that you need to be their kind of frum or you go to hell. It's a tactic to scare people into being religious but the people who preach this stuff have zero idea what happens, if anything, after death.

Jessica said...

Everyone goes to gehenom for a bit. Just to cleanse them of whatever sins they have (no matter if they were frum or not). As for people who were not frum and had the chance to learn, that rabbi has never walked a day in a secular person's shoes. When you grow up with it, it is very easy to stick with it. But just having the option to be frum, is not enough for someone to actually be frum. Also, just because your grandmother isn't frum, doesn't mean that some of your frumness hasn't rubbed off on her. Even so much as being respectful of your beliefs to not force you to eat treif at her house, or something like that, is a big deal for someone who does not have a religious background. I do have more to say, but I feel like I rambling. To answer the topic question, "Is your grandmother going to hell?" Absolutely! But I don't know of anyone who isn't. Once she done with her cleansing process, she's off to heaven like (hopefully) the rest of us.

frumskeptic said...

Jessica: "Also, just because your grandmother isn't frum, doesn't mean that some of your frumness hasn't rubbed off on her. Even so much as being respectful of your beliefs to not force you to eat treif at her house, or something like that, is a big deal for someone who does not have a religious background."

LOL!! In the beginning she completely FLIPPED out that we turned frum. she literally went nuts. She blamed my mom for making my dad frum (she my dads mom), and she used to try and get me and my sister to eat treif at her house ALLL the time. she would be like "I wont tell mama, this chicken is so fresh, spent 3 hours last night making it!"

And since we wouldn't eat it, she just gave up. But she still annoys us like crazy... I think she's just bored. cuz when we catch her doing something we told her she cannot do in our house like 100x, she just laughs, or smiles. lol. :)
I love the woman...but she sure as heck would rather we be not-frum.

abandoning eden said...

well think of it from her perspective, she's a grandmother and now she's being told she can't give her grandchildren any food, and that if she wants to visit her child and grandchildren, she has to follow a bunch of arcane laws that she may or may not remember.

You're question of whether or not your grandmother takes so many things for granted.
1. there is a god
2. we have a soul
3. after our bodies die, that soul survives somehow
4. God made a hell
5. God sends people there
6. God sends people there for things that don't hurt anyone
7. Jews are really god's chosen people
8. god wrote a book telling jews how to live
9. rabbis over the past 2500 years have interpreted this book correctly
10. If jews don't follow this book correctly to the letter, they will go to hell.

Of all those assumptions, I believe none, but I find the 10th one to be particularly unbelievable. Why would a certain elderly person I know, who 'follows all the mitzvot' but is a terrible person (says horrible things to her family members that makes every who knows her feel bad about themselves, hates everyone, never does anything extra to help anyone that isn't directly related to mitzvot- like she gives 10% of her money to tzedakah, but would never lift a hand to help someone on the street, especailly if that person is not jewish) why would she go to heaven but a person who is overall very nice to everyone, and improves the lives of everyone she meets, but doesn't happen to follow orthodox judaism, go to hell?

Also: How petty would god have to be to send someone to hell for not blessing him enough before eating, or not eating the right kind of food or flipping a light switch on saturday? I don't understand this conception of god, god sounds like a child who doesn't get his way.

Also: interestingly, every non jewish person I meet thinks that jewish people don't believe in hell.

frum single female said...

abandoning eden:i think that according to reform judaism there is no hell and for that matter there is no afterlife either.

frum single female said...

i dont think that your grandmother is going to hell. for that matter, keeping kosher and shabbot arent the only mitzvot. giving charity, taking care of the elderly, taking care of a sick child, veahvta lrayacha kamocha are all mitzvot that im sure your grandmother partook in. who knows what mitzvah gets the bigger brownie point?

Jay said...

Why don't you just let it go already and live your days which ever way the wind blows. Like that songs says "feel the rain upon your face" On my 60th birthday I mentioned to my kid brother (in his 50's) that righteous people, meaning tzadikim celbrated a 60th birthday as it meant that they were not "cha-yuv khores" which is the rabinically created punishiment for eating chometsz on pesach or eating anything on yom kippur. So he comments that I must have been a good boy. He gave me blank stare of astonishment when I told me 'either I have been a good boy or it's all bull-shit! No answer.

Orthoprax said...

AE,

"Also: interestingly, every non jewish person I meet thinks that jewish people don't believe in hell."

It's a matter of terminology. Hell in Christian circles is a place of eternal torment - whereas the typical OJ belief is that Gehenom is an unpleasant but temporary soul-cleanser akin to Christian Purgatory. Ergo, Jews don't believe in Hell as such.

Moshe said...

Everyone is going to hell. I was learning tanya with a guy in shul and he also mentioned another book written by one of the rabbonim of those times. Basically, both list sins for which there's no atonement, not even death and also the punishment people will get for each of them. The scary part is that a lot of those sins are very commonplace. I'd like to believe that it was applicable then but not now, but who knows.
As far as your grandma, Russia was and still is very good at brainwashing. My grandma, even when we came here, continued to believe that Lenin was a good person. What your rabbi said is bs. Your grandma and people like her aren't neutral, my dad is like that too btw. Think of somebody from a cult and how they act and respond.
Also, as frum single female has mentioned, frummies seem to forget that there are mitzvot other than shabbat, kosher and belief in G-d. Btw, though your grandma doesn't believe in G-d, or maybe she does and does't want to admit it, she is, ironically, fulfilling the mitzvah of not believing in other gods. If you think about it, out of the 10 commandments, she's doing more than half of them. Also, remember about Yom Kippur, G-d forgives aveiros done between man and G-d but not those done between man and man so it seems to me that being a good person and not being "religious" is better than being "religious" and being a scumbag.

Jessica said...

fs, of course she would rather you not be frum. then she could make you dinner and could do whatever she wants to do in your house. but the simple fact that she stopped being as adamant about it and that she doesn't just say "f*** off" when you tell her to not do something, it does show a certain amount of respect within her. The simple fact that she even still has a relationship with her frum relatives is a huge thing. I know that most of the non-frum people in my family "disowned" us when we became frum.

Moshe said...

Here's an interesting fact, my family members who aren't Jewish, have no problem with us being religious, it's the Jews who consider us psychos.

Holy Hyrax said...

>abandoning eden:i think that according to reform judaism there is no hell and for that matter there is no afterlife either.

Wow, Reform Judaism is not the Sadducees.

I don't think there is one definition for a "hell" in Judaism as in some other religions.

Jessica said...

Moshe - that's nothing new. Jews have always been the worst critics of other Jews.

mlevin said...

Moshe - what are you doing reading Tanya. Isn't it Chassidic/Lubavich book. Nice boy like you should go straight for Kabbalah?

Moshe said...

A lot of Tanya is Kabbalah. I go to Daf Yomi too and there's a lot of Kabbalah in Gemarah.
As far as going to learn with Esther, as fun as it sounds, I think I'll pass.

mlevin said...

Tanya is Kabbalah with Chassidic twist. I don't get why learn Tanya when there are other options (without Esther)

Moshe said...

Because me, him and another were getting together in his house Friday night and it was fun so why not.

yingerman said...

Well I dont believe everyone's goin to hell.
I know the Christians have a all of nuthin attitude, but we or at least the way i think, is that a person gets judged by their overall actions. How many times have you heard the 'scales' issue discussed, yes usually around rosh hashana/yom kippur time, but whos to say that it doesnt work that way at death too?
Even a non Jew, can be judged by his overall attitude and actions and get into heaven.
Of course heaven helps us along in this world by giving us grief, and those do purify us, body soul and personality.
I am also sure that there are some sins that wont let you in the door, and will require a return trip to earth (gilgulim), some sins like taking ribis (usuric percentage) prevent tichas hamiesim.
i dont know about Jessica, Moshe and gang but i have absolutely no plans of going to hell. If there is something you think that may or will send you to hell, then fix it today, or at least make an effort, heaven will understand.

PS Rabbi Aryeh Kaplan wrote that hell is not real, you know the big hot fires and stuff, he says that the same way your face burns when embarrased your soul will feel hot "burning" shame at the actions the body inflicted on it!

FedUp said...

Your grandmother's not going to hell. I liked what Abandoning Eden wrote towards the beginning.

הצעיר שלמה בן רפאל לבית שריקי ס"ט said...

whoah, a lot of comments here. Very varied community; you've got anthiests, agnostics, Diests, theists of every sort. My two cents are based on

Like 'abandoning eden' was complaining about, there are many more mitzvot than the ritual mitzvot. There are 'social' mitzvot too (helping one with their burden for example) which are perhaps even more important. What people in Brooklyn see as 'frum' most likely hasn't got much to do with what aspects of self-perfection G-d expects of man. An Oasis song comes to mind (Wonderwall) "by now you should have somehow realized what you're not to do(or "you've got to do"- depending on the chorus). G-d expects self as well as social perfection by the end of ones life (whenever that may come).

Though one should not minimize the importance of the ritual mitzvot, because they proclaim the level of self refinement and perfection one has reached in their life (if they UNDERSTAND those mitzvot).

Everybody is tested (according to the Rambam) according to how much they went beyond themselves for the sake of 'goodness' (obviously living in Boro Park and eating kosher food is not 'going beyond' ones normal capabilities).

But also; everyone is judged on their understanding, their nature, background emotion mindset etc. It's hard for us to comprehend the 'spiritual world' your old grandmother lives in, therefore we cannot comment. Only she knows (perhaps even not she) what she believes in, and how far she would go to do what she sees as right.

Orthoprax started by saying that we "have zero idea what happens, if anything, after death", which is true, but some things must be concluded based on certain logical principles. If one is of a conviction that it is more logical to conclude that there is a G-d who expects good of man, and who expects perfection from us, letting us go 'scott-free' after f--king up big time would be contradictory to the reason the universe was put into being.

העבד ס"ט

הצעיר שלמה בן רפאל לבית שריקי ס"ט said...

First paragraph correction: My two cents are based on the premise that there is a G-d (excluding all atheists) and that one must do what is right in the world (excluding all frum Jews!).

Orthoprax said...

"If one is of a conviction that it is more logical to conclude that there is a G-d who expects good of man, and who expects perfection from us, letting us go 'scott-free' after f--king up big time would be contradictory to the reason the universe was put into being."

Indeed - that is a lot of asumptions. If God is a person, as you say, with expectations and desires then such a God, being God, should expect that we, being human, would be imperfect in our deeds.

It's also quite a claim for one to say they know the purpose of the universe. A tower of cards.

הצעיר שלמה בן רפאל לבית שריקי ס"ט said...

Orthoprax man- how do you sleep- seriously? Always thinkin'... (I don't know what that means ok? It's not sarcastic, if that's what you might be thinking)..

"Expectations and desires"- OK, I'm using anthropomorphisms; I'm not perfect, you know I don't really mean them...

(In the theistic world-view) whatever 'put this universe into being' does not want 'nihilism'- there is definitely no purpose in that. Again, back to Oasis; "by now you should have somehow realized what you've got to do". I don't know if G-d 'expects', but it definitely makes sense that mind should win over matter after a while, and good-will over chaos. But again; punishment (in 'hell') is not necessarily a bad thing, just a consequence. Like becoming fat and unfit as a result of laziness and lack of exercise- becoming fat is not a punishment, but a consequence of reality.

(G-d doesn't 'expect' Anita's old Russian grandma to choose good over evil, it's 'expected' of her by now. And if she goes to hell for a period, she'll probably have more 'religious' company there than she ever had here anyway! ...she should live healthily for many more years to come).

"A tower of cards."- I sort of see it as a lesser of two evils...or greater of two goods perhaps.

Orthoprax said...

"how do you sleep- seriously?"

Shabbos. The rest of the week I'm like Edison - I nap.

"I don't know if G-d 'expects', but it definitely makes sense that mind should win over matter after a while, and good-will over chaos."

It does? Frankly, I don't even know what that means.

"But again; punishment (in 'hell') is not necessarily a bad thing, just a consequence. Like becoming fat and unfit as a result of laziness and lack of exercise- becoming fat is not a punishment, but a consequence of reality."

So what makes you think the consequences for behavior are not already present in our current existence?

It just seems to me that the afterlife is that unsubstantiated and unconfirmable place where the obvious injustices of the world are balanced out. But what makes you so sure injustice is balanced out at all? Unfairness may simply be a fact of our existence.

הצעיר שלמה בן רפאל לבית שריקי ס"ט said...

"mind should win over matter after a while, and good-will over chaos."

It does? Frankly, I don't even know what that means."- Yeah, ..yeah I think it does man. I think it's part of man's natural evolution to become more morally conscious and self aware...

"So what makes you think the consequences for behavior are not already present in our current existence?"- Yo man, back to the f--king bible again (obviously no disrespect intended towards the כתבי הקודש) 'kria't sh'ma'. Deuteronomy:
"והיה אם שמוע תשמעו...ונתתי מטר ארצכם בעתו, יורה ומלקוש. ואספת דגנך וכו...השמרו לכם, פן יפתה לבבכם..וכו.י".
It says here there is (a manifestation of some aspects at least) of reward and punishment in this world.

"But what makes you so sure injustice is balanced out at all? Unfairness may simply be a fact of our existence."- That's what it says in the f--king bible man, ok? It definitely doesn't make sense that the wicked should prosper doing exactly what it supposedly 'not to be done' (and the righteous punished). But anyway, I'm relying on 'revelation' here, not objective moral truths...

Holy Hyrax said...

>Unfairness may simply be a fact of our existence.

I think that is the opinions of some rishonom. The world, since it is a physical place will by its very nature have defects and "unfairness" in it.

Orthoprax said...

"I think it's part of man's natural evolution to become more morally conscious and self aware..."

Oh, is that all you mean? I'm down with that.

"It says here there is (a manifestation of some aspects at least) of reward and punishment in this world."

Indeed, so it says - and it's worth noting the lack of reference to any good or bad afterlife in the Torah.

"It definitely doesn't make sense that the wicked should prosper doing exactly what it supposedly 'not to be done' (and the righteous punished)."

True - that's the central question of several books of Tanach, especially Kohelet. Yet what we wish to be true doesn't necessarily mean that it is true.

3:20-21 "All go to the same place; all come from dust, and to dust all return. Who knows if the spirit of man rises upward and if the spirit of the animal goes down into the earth?"

הצעיר שלמה בן רפאל לבית שריקי ס"ט said...

who knows...*sigh*

(still gotta try to be moral though..)

The Babysitter said...

1) About Gehenim, its a purifying stage, but its not what we think of as torture, its a different type, its regretting not having done mitzvos in this world cause now the opportunity passed. Like anything else in life, that feeling of regret, that you should've could've but didn't, that is what it will feel like.
2) About all the restrictions. Really its not restrictions, they all have reasons...But then recently I heard something which made it easier to understand. Just like between one person and another, what makes them close, its that they pay attention to the small details. That the husband notices that the wife got a new outfit or he remembers her favorite food and surprises her with it, or stuff like that. So same way between one person and another that its the small details that matter. So to with Hashem. By doing the small mitzvos, things that seem like restrictions it shows you have a closeness with Hashem.
3)You know what, its actually harder for those that are FFB to follow what they were taught, then those that found it out on their own, they have a stronger foundation. But they do get a greater reward cause its harder to come to it on your own and leave your previous lifestyle.
4) That's why there's a concept of Kavanah and Machshava, you have to have the intent to do the mitzvah to fully get the reward. If someone has the intent to do a mitzvah and doesn't they still get the reward. But if someone does a mitzvah unwillingly they loose some of the reward cause they regretted it.
5) the Good and Evil don't cancel each other out, the person gets an advocate for each good deed, no matter what evil, then they get a prosecutor for each evil deed no matter how many good they did.
6)and btw, a person doesn't have to be frum to go to heaven. The good people who saved Jews in time of WW2 go to heaven even if their not frum, its based on good deeds, helping Jews and stuff.
7)Plus its not a set heaven v. Hell. Nobody is perfect, so could be lots of people will need a purifying process.

Orthoprax said...

"About Gehenim, its a purifying stage, but its not what we think of as torture, its a different type, its regretting not having done mitzvos in this world cause now the opportunity passed. Like anything else in life, that feeling of regret, that you should've could've but didn't, that is what it will feel like."

Where do you guys get this stuff from? And you say it so matter of factly, as if you're describing the view from Central Park.

"By doing the small mitzvos, things that seem like restrictions it shows you have a closeness with Hashem."

I think a great associated analogy is when a wife really doesn't know her husband very well but in honor of his birthday she (on the advice of a bearded mentor) spends hours following an intricate recipe for coconut cookies - all the while never realizing that the husband is actually allergic to coconuts.

Far too often I've seen Jews get stuck on the tofel of ritual minutiae and miss the ikkar of meaning.


I just don't understand how you guys can be so certain about the ways and means of transcendent existence which you've only heard about through hearsay. Don't pretend to know what you don't know.

הצעיר שלמה בן רפאל לבית שריקי ס"ט said...

Not that I mean to answer for the preaching babysitter, but in defense of the faith I just want to say that even a "fiddler-on the roof" type of Jew has what to rely on theologically, being that;

1) Judaism is the oldest and longest tried monotheistic religion (I mean like, Hinduism is an old religion, but they didn't found the majority religion in the 'civilized' world, and they weren't in constant contact with wise people with differing ideas through the ages as the Jews were).

2) Not that every other nation doesn't also have wise men, but I think if all the critical and thought-out (orthodox) Jewish philosophers came to some conclusions, the people who follow in their teachings definitely have what to rely on ("יש להם על מה לסמוך" בלשון הפוסקים). I mean, I'm not saying anything, but even the Western European (and their descendants in the colonies "America" for example) Christians admit that the Jews are a witty nation that were unmovable in their philosophies.

So again; if our great thinkers of the past millenium came to the conclusion that 'hell' is not a fiery place, but rather a place of embarrassment for ones previous (wrong) actions, it is definitely something one can be able to accept easier than the popes teachings for example...

"Far too often I've seen Jews get stuck on the tofel of ritual minutiae and miss the ikkar of meaning."-

מצידי- כנים דבריך לכולי עלמא

Orthoprax said...

"So again; if our great thinkers of the past millenium came to the conclusion that 'hell' is not a fiery place, but rather a place of embarrassment for ones previous (wrong) actions, it is definitely something one can be able to accept easier than the popes teachings for example..."

There's no data. It's all speculation. The wisest people had been wrong for centuries on things we take for granted today.

Plus, are you familiar with the Talmudic concepts of the afterlife? For example there are a few places where the Talmud says certain people are punished by being boiled forever in one disgusting bodily fluid or another.

Is this "easy to accept"?

Orthoprax said...

"[Onkelos] then went and raised by incantations the sinners of Israel. He asked them: Who is in repute in the other world? They replied: Israel. What about joining them? They replied: Seek their welfare, seek not their harm. Whoever touches them touches the apple of his eye.

He said: What is your punishment? They replied: With boiling hot excrement, since a Master has said: Whoever mocks at the words of the Sages is punished with boiling hot excrement."

- Gittin 57a

The Babysitter said...

orthopax: I'm saying it with certainty cause that is what I learnt many times in HS and then again in Sem, and there is a source for it.

Moshe said...

So what's the source? And it better be older than 50 years.
I have friends who go to shiurim where they get brainwashed and say, with absolute certainty, such bs.

Anonymous said...

no, and go give tzilya a big hug!
anony.

Orthoprax said...

Babysitter,

"I'm saying it with certainty cause that is what I learnt many times in HS and then again in Sem, and there is a source for it."

Oh, I didn't know you knew someone who came back from the dead. Talking to ghosts are you?

Funny how if I learned about the layout of Pittsburgh in school (a place I've never been) I wouldn't feel so confident telling people what it looks like. Kal v'chomer...

The Babysitter said...

ok I have the source. Its from a Bais Levi. When it talked about Yosef being sold by the brothers. It said the embaressment the brothers felt is like what we will feel, and then it spoke about what I said.

http://www.shemayisrael.co.il/parsha/alport/archives/vayigash67.htm

Orthoprax said...

"ok I have the source. Its from a Bais Levi."

Ok. And what does he base it on? His opinion?

The Babysitter said...

ok, so I'm not saying its an absolute answer. Its one possible answer. There can be others that argue against it.

Orthoprax said...

"ok, so I'm not saying its an absolute answer. Its one possible answer. There can be others that argue against it."

That's not my point. The point is not that other people say other things but that we should talk about what we do know rather than building up (and pretending to have knowledge of) various speculations to fill the gap.

הצעיר שלמה בן רפאל לבית שריקי ס"ט said...

Orthoprax- About some people burning in sh-t in the Talmud (as far as I understand it also says some people burn in semen : P ) 1. It too can be interpreted. 2. And I think this is important- even Orthodoxy has evolved a lot in ideology since the Talmudic times. As we and the world change, the 'clothing' the Torah is embodied in in our minds changes.

"There's no data. It's all speculation. The wisest people had been wrong for centuries on things we take for granted today."- I didn't say there was any data, just that the baybysitter has as much to rely on (or more) as any Christian, the Muslim or the atheist for example..

Theology is hard. Steven Hawking believes in G-d. OK, then the G-d of the Deists or the Theists? The G-d of the Christians or the Muslims (or the Jews)? None of it can be proven in any way. We Only have logic. The logical conclusions of the Jewish philosophers and Kabalists are a force to be reckoned with in the theological world...

I definitely agree with what you're telling ms. babysitter there though; we shouldn't go hear a speaker and blindly take what is said as G-d's truth.

Orthoprax said...

"And I think this is important- even Orthodoxy has evolved a lot in ideology since the Talmudic times."

I agree. And I think it ought to evolve to the point where this kind of speculation is deemed diversionary and we don't need to scare people into being observant or good people.

"the baybysitter has as much to rely on (or more) as any Christian, the Muslim or the atheist for example.."

Heh. Well that's not saying much.

"We Only have logic. The logical conclusions of the Jewish philosophers and Kabalists are a force to be reckoned with in the theological world..."

You think Kabalah is based on logic? It's mysticism.

The Babysitter said...

Orthopax: no one is pretending we know stuff. Its all based on logical explanations. How do you figure out anything, its always by looking at a base and then analyzing it. Even with the law system in United States, they look at the old cases of laws and then judge todays cases based on those, they are interpretations. Not everything can be written down, because things change, so it has to be general to allow for reinterpretations fitting to the days that change.

???????? ????? (Hebrew letters): I wouldn't compare what I'm saying to Christians and Muslims.

הצעיר שלמה בן רפאל לבית שריקי ס"ט said...

Babysitter: Do you ever give "musar shmuzen" to the children you babysit? You should get paid extra! (...it sucks that mostly girls get to do babysitting by the way..it's an easy job (comparatively) and gets paid pretty well..)

And no- I wasn't "comparing what you're saying to Christians and Muslims", I was telling mr. orthoprax that your ideologies have at least as much basis as any other, if not more..

I just wanted it to be mentioned here, mainly to orthoprax, that that's what I find interesting about these blogs; none of us are Reform Jews from Cincinnati, none of us are totally secular, we all come from the very same community here in Brooklyn NY (and the NY-Metro vicinity). And it could in fact be that because we're all somewhat 'products' of this environment that gives us so much speak up about. Which is also why we all can comprehend our -at times- pretty bizarre lingo and ideas, because we've all heard them together.

ס"ט

The Babysitter said...

????? ????? (Hebrew letters): nope I never give mussar shmoozes to the kids I babysit, or anyone for that matter, just online for some reason I don't know why.
and thanx then I guess.
and not necessarily, part of the internet is it connects people from all over, so the bloggers could be from other places besidess Brooklyn, NY or even US.

Orthoprax said...

Babysitter,

"no one is pretending we know stuff."

Yes you were. You were *certain.*

"Its all based on logical explanations."

No it's not. Assumptions and speculation. That's what they're based on.

"How do you figure out anything, its always by looking at a base and then analyzing it. Even with the law system in United States, they look at the old cases of laws and then judge todays cases based on those, they are interpretations. Not everything can be written down, because things change, so it has to be general to allow for reinterpretations fitting to the days that change."

So like American law, metaphysics is a human construct?

The Greeks were famous for "logically" figuring out the natural world and they turned out to be wrong far more often then they approximated correctness. And the natural world is something we are actually familiar with.

But you think other men can logically figure out metaphysics - something we do not ever experience directly?

The Babysitter said...

orthopax: ok, you win!

Anonymous said...

Since no one here has died or communicated with anyone who has died, we can't say without absolute certainty. I have had a bunch of old people swear to make an effort to come and tell me once they pass on, but it probably doesn't work that way. I say either way, just be nice to people. This way no matter what kind of Jew you are, you're covered

lirehagi