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Enough with the smiting on the head! - But here in my heart, I give you the best of my love.

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October 30th, 2007

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05:12 pm - Enough with the smiting on the head!
And another reason why people become atheists. Too much revealed G-dliness is frightening.
It's much safer intellectually to write it off as coincidence.
Current Mood: rushedstalling

(8 Represent the voice of the people | Request an audience)


[User Picture]
Date:October 30th, 2007 09:32 pm (UTC)
For me it was the lack of God revealing himself in any way whatsoever.
[User Picture]
Date:October 31st, 2007 12:59 pm (UTC)
Both your icons taken together are cracking me up.

[User Picture]
Date:October 31st, 2007 01:22 pm (UTC)

Much as I hate pithy responses generally....

[User Picture]
Date:October 31st, 2007 01:34 pm (UTC)

Re: Much as I hate pithy responses generally....

[User Picture]
Date:October 31st, 2007 01:38 pm (UTC)
Seriously though, one of the fundemental differences (emphasis on the mental part) between believers or not is the importance, significance, or meaning we attached to the events we bear witness to.

Some people would see the same exact things I see and draw completely different conclusions. Taking our example from last week. Some people wouldn't associate the fire alarm with any divine activity. It's fire alarm testing. It has to happen some time, right? And this probably seemed like a good time, not too hot, not snowy or icy, X number of days from the last test...etc. etc.

For most people, it was probably a random act of the universe, for me it was a message, and in my opinion, not an especially subtle one. My therapist and I discussed the idea that had I not responded to it immediately as a message, it's quite possible the next "message" would have been even less subtle.

Furthermore, when I tried to be sorta smug and cosmpolitan and write it off has chance, or deny that G-d could really do a proper kikayon setup, I got a follow-up intervention. Random coincidence. Maybe. But if all order is self-imposed, there's clearly a pattern to my self imposed order. You can make the case that I knew she'd be there, because I've seen her there before, except I never have seen her there, and she lives across town. It's, of course, not statistically impossible that the person who is probably single-handedly responsible for getting me involved with the synagogue would show up on synagogue business within the 10 minutes I was getting lunch at a restaurant no where near the synagogue on the day that I joined the synagogue, but you have to admit, it's a little weird.

Still, I could walk away from both of those incidents, even back-to-back, untouched by the coincidence. The fire alarm was a good excuse for going off and running an errand I've been meaning to take care of. Seeing Ellen, well, we live in the same town, we're bound to run into each other in public now and again.

To a non-believer, it's just a weird coincidence. Odd when it happens, but not needed. To a believer, it's a neon sign saying, "This way, stupid!" Ironically, I can see both sides, as I imagine you can, but I can only choose one. I just find it really difficult to be remain unmoved in the face of what some, maybe even most, people would call coincidence.
[User Picture]
Date:October 31st, 2007 02:06 pm (UTC)
I do have a question. I noticed you always type G-d.

In all seriousness, is it really a big deal that you leave out the o? If so, why is it a big deal? I never understood that. It's like people that say fudge. Everybody knows what you mean and what you really want to say. The meaning and intent behind the words is what matters, not the actual word itself. Why is saying G-d any different then saying God? The person reading it, the person writing it, and clearly God would know what you meant.
[User Picture]
Date:October 31st, 2007 03:00 pm (UTC)
Good question. I'm glad you asked.
1) it's a habit.

2) Because of the command not to take G-'d name in vain. (Not my favorite of the bunch); religions have developed a bunch of automatic defence mechanisms against accidental transgressions. This is one of them. It's disrespectful to erase the name of the G-d, you avoid writing it wherever possible. Technically, there's no transgression to writing it out for the following reasons:
a) I'm in the process of education and constructive dialogue about religion. Use of the name of G-d would be entirely appropriate in such a context and not a Biblical transgression.
b) It's English, not Hebrew. The name of G-d doesn't exist in English form, per se. The mere fact of using English already means I'm not using a name of G-d. If I were to type Adonai, for example, that's a nickname for the tetragramaton (Yud Hay Vov Hey), and I could type that out (although many people don't and most people avoid saying it). Some people say it's a name for G-d in and of itself, and many people don't use God, Adonai, or the tetragrammaton, but instead use the word "Hashem" which means "The Name" and it's a euphamistic name for G-d. I figure my journal is hard enough to read as it is, so I don't use it here. I do use it other places. But if I'm going to use a euphamistic name, it's going to be my personal favorite, HaKBHu (which is short for HaKodosh Baruch Hu, which means The Holy one, Blessed Be He), which again, renders the journal inaccessible to most people, not my primary goal.
c) I'm not writing in a conventionally disposable medium. There are lots of discussions, none of which I'm intellectually qualified to rule on, about how to dispose of G-d's name in a respectful manner. Similar to a flag, you cannot simply toss it in the trash when you've finished with it. However the online medium, editing or deleting is akin, to what exactly? Well no one is sure. Some say you can't delete it. Some say you can't. Most say it's best not to put yourself in a position where you have that issue. If I were writing you a letter, you could throw it away with no problem. If I used a proper name of G-d, I'd want to dispose of it appropriately either through burial or through a process called genesa, where you bring it to collection point and it's shoved in an out of the way place until it either gets buried, disintigrates, or is discovered as a masterwork of genius by future generations.

Personally, I agree with you. It's a bit of sophistry, like selling your bread and bread accessories for Passover which involves the seller putting the stuff away in his or her house, and a legal fiction sale for a nominal cash consideration in which someone who isn't Jewish "owns" the stuff and then the seller "buys" it back. However you invoke the essence of G-d, there's no question that it's what you're doing, whatever name you use and however you spell it.

So the answer to your question is, it's mostly habit. There are no technical or legal violations to typing out the word. I just don't.
[User Picture]
Date:October 31st, 2007 03:17 pm (UTC)

I just get this funny vision of two people trying to get into heaven. One is a good person that uses the lords name when discussion religion in a sane sensible manner. The other says words like jeebus and gosh darnit all the time but uses them in a mean way.

The first guy is denied and the second guy gets in. :)

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