The Jewish people is the holy Torah, which lights our way in the darkness of exile. This book is written to give some general idea of the Jewish approach to various phenomena and events, the usual and unusual .....
In the beginning of the way a person looks at the world with wide open eyes and sees him many secrets. In his youth, everyone thinks about infinity stellar spaces, wonders of nature, the paradoxes of history, the mystery of life and death and the other eternal questions of life. But as the years go by, we grow up, there are more mundane and immediate care. We often look at the ground, than the stars and the eternal questions are secondary. Sometimes it seems that you can quite happily do without them. But sometimes a person suddenly raises his eyes and sees: the world is still full of mysteries, and we still do not know the answers to the eternal questions. And who's to say whether we live in? What is the meaning of our lives? All this in the proposed book.
The author argues that the truth is conceived primarily not through science, logic and reason - the truth only comes with faith. In a lively and accessible form reveals an inextricable link God to the Jewish people.
Table of contents
Chap. 1. Life after death
Chap. 2. The king's daughter in a peasant's house
Chap. 3. Window to another world
Chap. 4. The soul and faith
Chap. 5. "Remember the day of death"
Chap. 6. Faith and freedom of choice
Chap. 7. Evolution: A theory or hypothesis?
Chap. 8. Science on the side of the book of Genesis
Chap. 9. From the electron to the galaxy
Chap. 10. "The ways of the Lord works in mysterious ..."
Chap. 11. Israel and its prophets
Chap. 12. The Torah - the model of the universe
Chap. 13. Ecology of the Garden of Eden
Chap. 14. What is "good" and what is "bad"?
Chap. 15. Who said: "Thou shalt not kill"?
Chap. 16. "Choose life ..."
Rabbi Yehuda Gordon was born in Vilnius. In Israel since 1965, studied history, literature, philosophy and economics at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, at the Sorbonne in Paris, Touro College in New York. Since 1975, he studied in a number of well-known yeshiva in Israel, France and the United States. He received the rank of chief rabbis, Rabbi of Jerusalem, p. Yitzhak Kolitsa and p. Shalom Mushasha and from the Chief Rabbinate of Israel. Fluent in six languages. Author of the book "Go to your", "Garden of Eden", "Hunter husbands", "Brit Mila". Passover Haggadah translated into Russian. The last 16 years a member of the Directorate of rabbinical courts in Israel for the establishment of Jewish and divorce (agunot). For 15 years he worked with Rabbi Yitzchak Zilber, who gave him all the works of a divorce.
In 2004 he was appointed rabbi of immigrants, mostly from the CIS. He lives in Jerusalem.
And called the L-rd Gd to Adam and said to him: "Where are you? '.
"What good are all the works of man under the sun? Generation goes, and a generation comes, but the earth abideth for ever ... There is no remembrance of former [generations], and follow-up, which will not remain in the memory of those that shall come after" ( Ko ^ elet, 1:3,4,11).
Why do people live? This is a key question every thinking being. In search of an answer to it born many philosophies. But, as before, from the time of King Solomon, the "eternal question" continues to torment the souls of the old, a teenager, a rich man and a beggar. "For who knows what is good for human life, within days of his vain life which pro-walk like a shadow? And who can tell a man what shall be after him under the sun?" (Ecclesiastes 6:12).
We drop a seed in the ground - and see who grew the ear. We are building a house - it protects us from the rain and sun. Any work brings results. So is our life has no meaning, and in the end - the lifeless body, gave the worms, and non-high mound of other graves? That's it? But why live? Why all the effort, suffering pangs of conscience, work, the pursuit of truth? Was it all disappear without a trace after the dissolution of the body? "All go to one place, all are of the dust, and all turn to dust" (Ecclesiastes 3:20).
"It takes sixty years to a man become a man, but at that age he was no good for nothing - it is waiting for the grave" - lamented the French writer Francois Mauriac.
The Greek philosopher Diogenes once announced to his disciples:
- When I die, throw my body in the field.
- But the teacher - students were surprised - you will eat the same bird!
- So I insert a stick - said Diogenes.
- But do not you'll be able to drive away the birds? You'll be dead!
- If so, - replied Diogenes - then what do I care about what happens to my body?
From the point of view of the materialist philosopher was right. If the dead person is no different from a stone or piece of wood, and then deal with it accordingly follows. Throw, throw away as worthless thing. Or bury it in a landfill as a dead cat.
Logical? But for some reason, none of the people not to throw a dead field to be devoured by wild beasts. Even the most
convinced materialists do not throw the bodies of their dead relatives to the dump. Although none of them explain what is the meaning arrange cemetery, monitor their purity, plant flowers, put a plate with the name of the buried person, to visit the grave, if there is, beyond death - a void?
Sense and logic appear only when we recognize that in the face of this is something else. This is something that remains of man after death, called the soul. But if we recognize the existence of the soul, we should accept the fact that, apart from the material world is the spiritual world. Once the body dies, the soul remains, then the spiritual world beyond the material, and from there run our world. And if the world is controlled by someone else, and that is the one who controls the ... In short, we must accept the fact of God's existence. Otherwise, our question remains unanswered: what is given a man's life? And what is left of us after death?
A fragment from the book:
15. WHO SAID: "Thou shalt not kill?"
And Avraham said, "For I thought, that is not at all fear of Gd in this place, and they will kill me for my wife."
Than dictated by the commandment "Thou shalt not kill"? Torah or "universal ethics"? In other words, who found that kill - bad? Reason and logic? But they suggest to us is usually a rational decision. And often it turns out that to kill another profitable, convenient and secure. From the point of view of logic, the life of a stranger is not use to us. And if this person is also hinders the achievement of our goals, the best way - to get rid of him. It is known that the famous murderers and criminals were often men of high intelligence and are not devoid of sentimentality - loved children and animals are well treated their families. Adolf Eichmann and other Nazi murderers acted "reasonably and rationally," sending millions of people to an agonizing death ...
The mind rarely encourages people to moral behavior. Practical reason is almost always causes a person to justify ("scientifically justified", "streamline", etc.), the most immoral behavior - from support for Nazism and communism to a fine of fraud at work and at home. -On the contrary, morality requires individuals to continuous improvement, as a science and an art. The Baal Shem Tov said, "Man - this is his mind." The mind is neutral. The mind of man - it's just a tool that can be used for evil purposes, and for a good cause.
And maybe kill bad because some of the spiritual leaders decided that? But who among the people can have such an authority to dictate to the rest of what is good and what is bad? Who is eligible? The smartest, bravest, the most powerful? Let even the most fair. Sooner or later, this man shall die, and there will be others legislators. And with the murder will vary in each generation. No, with the murder as a heinous deed can be formed only under the influence of the eternal, absolute authority.
Suppose we consider killing evil, because it's so accepted in our society and in our country. But in some Asian and African civilizations quite certain forms of legalized murder. For example, Indians and many other pagans was made to kill the deceased wife of the leader, so he could "take them with you to the afterlife." And what to say about this not long ago outlived custom, as cannibalism!
Janusz Korczak in the story "King Matt I», describes the fairy land of cannibals: "Once a year all the negros gathered in the capital, and one of those chosen to be this year eaten by the royal court. Those who chose, very happy, and those which King defective, were very sad. Selected to be eaten by wild dancing dance of joy, and unselected walked on all fours (it was a funeral dance) and also sang, but sadly, as if crying. "
Tales of fairy tales, but among these was considered to be eaten by cannibals, if not happy, then at least, it is not a crime. And the ancient Spartans believed fully rational drop off a cliff weak and sick babies and their parents grown old.
Of course, we do seem to savagery. But, on the other hand, what we have the right to impose their ideas to other people? Just because we live in a big beautiful houses, wear leather shoes and know how to brush your teeth? This is not an excuse to be an example of morality. Very neat, tidy, wearing German officers amused at his club of rugs and paintings, talking about philosophy and literature, the music of Wagner, and the radiators in the club heated water passes through the crematorium furnace, where the Jews were burned. Thus, the Germans received a double pleasure. Is there a relationship between culture and the good?
Let us also remember that the enlightened Western society rather indifferent reacted to Hitler's attempt to annihilate all the Jews of Europe. None of the countries that Nazi Germany was not threatened directly, not declared war. Even after the defeat of Nazism only nineteen states have responded to the call of the allies to convene an international tribunal and punish the perpetrators. Do you think they would be considered criminals if Germany had not lost the war?
World was silent when Hitler turned to his people: "Germans! I urge you to get rid of the chimera called conscience ». Millions of people have gotten rid of this chimera is completely painless - after all, what was formerly called the murder, is now considered a feat for the country.
In 1848, Marx called his theory "the only correct one." The story turned so that millions of people were killed and were killed in the name of the "only right" theory. And then it turned out that the prophet of "scientific communism" a little mistake ...
Existentialist writers have expressed very popular in today's world, the idea that each person has his own truth, he can not impose on others. More Bertrand Russell said thoughtfully, "I can not believe that violence is bad just because she did not like it." The French writer Albert Camus portrayed "happy hero." It appeared to the pagan legends of Sisyphus, who was doomed forever racking heavy stone up the mountain, but at the top of the stone always rolled back. Is it happiness? And why not? After all, one can be right and happy in their own way, there are no criteria of truth and happiness.
Rabbi Nachman of Breslov said that man is where he has his idea. When a person perceives Gd, he is getting closer to him, and really is with him.
Even those who did not believe that killing is good, are often willing to justify the killing, if it is made with a kind of "noble" goal. Judaism also teaches that human life - the highest value.
Thus, both philosophical and practical reasons of humanity itself can not of itself establish moral principles. Especially since the story of people - is primarily a story of war and suffering. For centuries, the human mind invented various theories that justify violence, sin, oppression neighbor. In our time, do not even need it. For millions of people the greatest happiness is the ability to perform all of their impunity, carnal desires.
Maybe ban kill - it's the law of nature? But most of the animals exists solely due to the murder of their innocent brethren. Even plants displace each other with fertile soil. In nature, a different law prevails, "You are guilty because I want to eat." Anyone who wants to find confirmation of universal ethics with its law, "Thou shalt not kill", to admit the existence of an eternal, absolute, timeless authority, Judges, standing over people.
Another question asked by doubters: If God is merciful, why so much suffering in the world? In fact, this is the answer to the first question is: do we need the commandments, if a person is "good" by nature? Man is designed so that it and get on to the good inclination and tendency to evil. And only on the person (or, most importantly, on the education he received) depends what overpower. This is - a precious gift that the descendants of Adam, alone of all living beings, have received from God, - the freedom to choose their path.
But we are told that the soul - of the divine origin and is always striving for goodness and light! Where do we get the tendency to evil? We must remember that the scope of the individual - the physical world, that part of the universe, in which the presence of Gd is hidden as much as possible. The human body - is, in fact, the body of the animal. Our sages teach us that an angel in human nature is connected with the nature of the beast. Angel vsgda perfect, it can not fall and get up. A person may fall low, but rise very high.
These contradictions complicate our lives, but they are inseparable from the concept of freedom of choice. In order for a person to knowingly choose good, he is given the opportunity to choose evil. Otherwise good choice could not be put to his credit.
But not in this case, whether the propensity to evil (yetzer gara) received from the Creator, excuse misdeeds? Like, the yetzer gara won, and the man is weak ... Allah has given man the freedom to choose not to destroy it, and to experience. Therefore, each person has the strength to resist evil motives. It is only necessary to mobilize them. This task and serve the commandments.
What is the commandments given to us by God? It is a universal system of rules, doing that we simultaneously:
1) to control nature and guard it;
2) dedicate my body and soul;
3) serve our Creator;
4) to remain as a people.
We have already noted that we do not know the secrets of the universe and to follow the laws of the Torah, so as not to damage anything in this world. Moreover, violating a given order, we undermine the foundations of Creation. Any word and deed leave their mark not only in this world but in the world of the Supreme. Since smoke from a factory chimney dissolves in the sky, at first glance, without a trace, but after a short time on earth is shed toxic rain.