What G-d Really Wants From You – the Four Questions

Person is Body & Soul
A person is comprised of a body and soul. The soul itself is comprised of parts – a lofty part that desires spirituality and closeness to G-d. Another part has earthly desires, to eat, drink, etc. It must be That there is a soul in a body. A body without a soul is an inanimate object, like a chair that doesn’t think or grow. One’s main essence is their soul, for one’s thoughts emanate from there.

What is Spirituality?

Spirituality must be defined. We will define it as developing a closeness with G.d. Apparently to develop closeness one must know what G.d wants. One becomes close to another by doing things that the other wants.

Know Your Destination in Life
People travel. Some explain, because they seek something spiritual.
Before one goes on a journey, they should know where they
are going. We are all going on the Journey of Life. It behooves us to
know that our destination is the next world. It thus makes sense to find
out the directions to get there. Thus here are four simple questions
that any rational person can answer to get to the truth.
Is it possible to Arrive at Existence of G-d Rationally?
Some people believe in G.d, some know there is a G.d, some don’t. There are thousands of religions – how does one choose the right one?
Apparently G.d has one law. What is that law?
Apparently G.d made it possible for a person to find out the right law. How do we find the right law?

Apparently G-d not only made it possible, but easy for any person in the world to find the true will of G-d. It must be so. One of the 13 principles of the Judaism – is that G-d will reward the righteous & punish the evil – possibly in this world or the next. If one cannot easily find out the true Will of G-d, when one arrives in the next world & G-d will say for instance “why did you steal?” he will be able to get out of it by saying – sorry I never knew that stealing was forbidden. And G-d would have to forgive them. Apparently, it is easy to find out the truth.Apparently, thus, one does not have to know any details of any religions – like biblical verses. At times many missionaries – use Biblical verses out of context and completely contorted and distorted to “prove” their claim. When a verse is talking about a completely different subject – they use it to provide evidence to their religion. Some try to prove the validity of their religion. When one goes and sees the actual explanation, by consulting the Torah texts, that were based upon the transmission of the Torah at Sinai – they see through their trickery. Many Verses exist to show the opposite of what they show. Like the verse of Bilaam the Prophet – He says straight out in the Torah “G-d is Not a Man.” You cannot get more clear than that. Also the Second Commandment prohibits making any representation or image of G-d – anything from earth, or in the waters or in the heavens. It is forbidden to even think of an imaginary image of G-d or to look at a physical image made by humans to represent G-d. Any Image is made for thus is considered idolatry. G-d is limitless. Any physical thing is limited. To make an image would be to ascribe to G-d a limit or weakness. G-d has no limit or weaknesses.

Criteria in Choosing a Religion

The first question in finding G.d’s law one should ask themselves is not “what criteria are important for me in a religion?” Because everyone would then choose the religion that is most convenient to them, which is not necessarily the right religion of G.d. Finding The law of G.d would be subjective and one would never be able to find the true law of G.d because it would be like two people discussing what is a color that is better.
The way to find G.d must be objective. A way that is based upon logic, rational thought, facts and truth rather than feelings. Feelings are subjective. Logic is objective.
This certainly does not mean one should serve G.d without feelings. It means one should first determine what is the right path of G.d objectively. Once one finds the right path then they can direct their feelings and actions on what G.d wants from us.
What Does G-d Want From Me?
Our main concern in finding G.d’s law is not “what do I want from G.d?” It is “what does G.d want from me?”
To find out what G-d wants from us, we must find the true law of G-d. Once that is found, we can direct our efforts towards achieving His will.
The Four Questions – the Logical Method
Now we will discuss the four questions that one can use to find the true law of G.d. These questions are objective. The answers must be logical. If the answer is not logical, it must mean that that we must reject the illogical answer for the logical one. They are four yes or no questions. We will give the possible answer of both yes and no and evaluate the implications.
Let’s take an example question to demonstrate the logical method. Below is a question and two possible answers – Yes & No. Let us propose both answers and examine the implications of answering Yes & No.
Did George Washington Exist?
No
Yes.
If one would answer no, the implication would be that all the pictures, stories, history, newspaper articles, art and books about him would be forgeries. It is possible, but unlikely to say he did not exist.
If one would answer yes, all those evidence would serve to support his existence.
From logic we can assume that George Washington did exist.

But that is easy.Caveat: One does not as readily accept the existence of G.d because doing so entails that we would be obliged to follow His laws. Human nature wants to be free from laws. I discussed with an Oxford professor the existence of G.d. While he accepted that Picasso existed because of the proof of the existence of his art, he could not come to accept that G.d exists because of the proof of the existence of His art – the world, nature, science, astronomy etc.

You must decide does it make sense? Does it make sense that all the photographs, all the art, all the history, all the newspaper articles were forgeries? No. So “No. George Washington didn’t exist” is an illogical statement and thus we must reject it because it is illogical – it doesn’t make sense.

The Four Questions to Arrive at the Law of G-d through a Rational Approach

Question

Possible

Answer

Implication
Logical
1.
Is
There a G-d?
No
World,
All
Nature, Physical Processes,
creatures,
Cells,

w
ere
created
by
random
molecules flying Around.

They Continue to
grow
&
function
through random interaction of molecules – including
the
11 human body organ systems that work
interdependently : integumentary, skeletal,
muscular, lymphatic, respiratory, digestive, nervous, endocrine,
cardiovascular, urinary
& reproductive systems.
No
Yes
World
was created with
Order
(
Animal,
Plant,
Fungi,
Protist,
Moneran Kingdoms
),
Intelligence,
Standards
(Kingdom,
Phylum, Class, Order, Family, Genus, Species
),
Gravity, Mathematics,
Pairs
(For
all
males
is a corresponding female species) Perfectly Synchronized
Together, Methods of Mutual Interaction by Intelligent Creator.
Yes
2.
Did
G-d Give a Law for People to Follow?
No
Man
& Animal are free to do what they want without care or concern
for harm or destruction of others or world.
No
Yes
G-d
gave a detailed set of laws for world to remain intact and run
smoothly. Just like a company includes instructions with their
products, G-d gave laws to people to maintain his world.
Yes
3.
What
is That Law?
Cult
or Religion
Started
by 1 person who had a vision or dream & Propagated by
followers. Millions of Followers Believing story of 1 man.
Thousands of Versions of “Bible” – Less Likely to Be Real Law
No
Torah
Millions
of witnesses, the entire Jewish People, heard G-d Speaking with
them individually. One version of Torah, exactly the same
throughout the world. Many Proofs.
Yes
4.
Did
G-d Change His Mind About People or Law?
Yes
G-d,
who knows all, knows the past, present and future, After
formulating precise Laws found in the Written & Oral Torah,
G-d “Changed His Mind” and nullified the laws
No
No
G-d,
who knows all, knows the past, present and future, After
formulating precise Laws found in the Written & Oral Torah,
G-d never changed his laws
Yes

Many Other Proofs Exist to the Veracity of G-d or the Torah such as National Revelation & Experience of Jewish People, Prayer to G-d of Israel is Answered, Torah Codes, Prophesies Fulfilled, Archeology, Things impossible to predict in Torah (No Fish w/Scales & No Fins, Triple Yield of Shmitah)

So A Person Can ask Now: Now What?

Judaism Offers a dual track – one Set of Laws for Jews – the 613 Commandments and One for Gentiles the 7 Noahide laws.

Of the 613 Torah Commandments for Jews – Only about 270 Are Applicable for Today. For some require the existence of our Holy Temple in Jerusalem and it is not yet built. We hope it will be built speedily in our days.  The 7 Noahide Laws are the Big lines. But Some say they comprise of 30 or some say, even 66 Torah Laws.

Jewish
Gentile
Learn
Ab
out 613 Commandments in Torah:
see:
aish.com, torahanytime.com, shabbat.com, partnersintorah.com,
torahdownloads.com, torah.org,
jewishmusicstream.com,
simpletoremember.com
Learn
About 7 Noahide Laws from Torah:

Path
of the Righteous Gentile” Clorfene & Rogalsky

http://noahide-ancient-path.co.uk/index.php/judaism-articles/2011/05/the-path-of-the-righteous-gentile/

These Are the Seven Noahide Laws – Given to Noah for World Peace

They are Immutable Laws for the Good & Happiness of Man & Mankind given to the Jews in the Torah at Sinai ∙ the Only Time in History G∙d appeared to an Entire Nation. Doing them, a Person finds Purpose & gets a place in Heaven.

Just as an architect designed a building, the Creator designed & made the world.

The Torah, given by G∙d to the Jews at Sinai, provides 7 Laws for all Humanity, for a peaceful world.

Only once in History did a Nation of millions of people hear G∙d & witness the giving of a Divine Law – when G∙d gave the Torah to the Jewish people. Moses taught detail.

G∙d does great kindness for us each day. He gives us life, food, air, shelter & clothes daily. G∙d is One, Omniscient, changes not His mind & has no body.

To receive a place in heaven, one accepts Torah as G∙d’s true Law. Jews observe Torah’s 613 Commandments & Gentiles observe Noahide laws because they are stated in Torah. Learning our respective laws enables us to be truly refined, kind & wise. Everyone can improve & be good. G∙d Loves Those Who Keep His Laws.

1. Being Faithful to G∙d – Prohibition of Idolatry/ Worship of Object,Animal,Man

2. Respect of Integrity of Family – Prohibition of Improper Relations – Adultery,Bestiality,Homosexuality& Incest

3. Respect of Human Life – Prohibition of Murder

4. Respect of G∙d – Prohibition of Blasphemy

5. Respect of Other’s Property – Prohibition of Stealing

6. Law and Order – Establishing Courts of Law

7. Respect of Living Creatures – Prohibition of Eating a Limb Taken from a Live Animal

Someone Interested in the Laws For the Jewish People Should Look at the Shulchan Aruch by Rabbi Yosef Caro or the Kitzur Shulchan Aruch by Raabi Shlomo Gansfried.

The First Step in a Journey is to acknowledge the need to travel.

Enjoy Your Journey!

==
Sites for More Info:

Book: “Path of the Righteous Gentile” Chaim Clorfene & Yakov Rogalsky
Book Online: http://noahide-ancient-path.co.uk/index.php/judaism-articles/2011/05/the-path-of-the-righteous-gentile/
http://jerusalemlife.com/?p=3802
http://www.aish.com/jl/jnj/nj/

Home


http://noahidenations.com
http://asknoah.org
Prayer Book, etc:
http://okbns.org/pdf/

The Prophet & The King – Living Through Nibiru / Planet X

Beautiful-Rain-HD-Wallpaper-For-DesktopDon’t Stop the Rain.

On Yom Kippur, one of the Holiest Days in the Jewish Year we say a prayer for G-d not to listen to the wayfarers. Travelers, may pray for no rain to fall on their journey. We need rain. Without rain, no vegetation. No Vegetation – no food. We ask G-d not to listen to that prayer.

The rain serves another purpose. Cleanliness is close to G-d-liness. (see Mesilat Yesharim). G-d wants a clean world. The world is washed through rain.

Messianic Times – Cleansing the World from Evil

For thousands of years, the Jews yearned for a time where peace will reign in the world. When we and all people can serve G-d without burdens or bother.

This is called the period of the Messiah. The Messiah will be a great person who will bring peace to the world.

We are very close to Messiah. One of the goals of Messiah is to cleanse the world from Evil. Those elements that act contrary to G-d’s laws. Those that don’t believe. Those that care not about spirituality or truth.

 Power of Repentance

But those people are not doomed. Repentance is always possible for these people. If they didn’t believe in the G-d of Israel, they can start believing. If they had a hatred for Jews, they can change their attitude. If they committed sins in the past according to the Torah, they can separate from these sins, commit not to do them more and ask for forgiveness.

G-d is very forgiving. In the great flood at the time of Noah, G-d waited for the last moment, hoping people would repent. If they did, G-d would have cancelled the flood. Unfortunately, people didn’t repent. If a person repents sincerely, to do the will of G-d as explained in the Torah, a person can be more likely saved from calamity. A Jew follows the Shulchan Aruch – code of Jewish Laws. A Gentile follow the 7 Noahide laws – as explained in the Torah.

Why Should one follow Judaism?

The Torah offers two paths. One for Jews and one for non-Jews / Gentiles. Jews follow the 613 commandments. Gentiles Follow the 7 Noahide commandments. It is possible to come to the conclusion that the Torah is G-d’s law. How? In History, the Torah was the only Divine law given before millions of people. All other laws, were transmitted by one man. The Torah was transmitted by G-d Himself, witnessed by millions of people.

God is Good – His Laws Are Just & Kind

G-d’s laws from the Torah are for the good of man. Unfortunately, many do not understand that.

Let’s take the law in the Torah that prohibits Homosexuality for Jews or Gentiles.

Who is kinder? The US Supreme Court – that permitted same-gender marriages or G-d that forbids it?

Giving a person what they want is not necessarily kind. Is giving a person cigarettes, or an alcoholic whiskey, or a druggie drugs – being kind? No.

So how are we to understand how G-d is infinitely kind? Or that the Laws of the Supreme Court are actually tremendously cruel?

I met many people who are support same gender marriage. If someone were to say – let’s do away with these people – they would be considered cruel. And to suggest terminating their descendants is also very cruel.

In reality the Supreme court has achieved this goal of destroying the future generations of all people who participate in same-gender marriages. If same-gender marriage was outlawed, many people among them, would have reverted to a traditional marriage – between male & female. They could have descendants that could bring much good to the world. The Supreme Court’s ruling – terminated generations of good people with one stroke of the pen.

Some will say – ok, but these people can adopt. Answer: They will never have children that have their genes. Their children will never be raised by their biological parents. Their descendants will not be a unique individual from the mutual genes of the partners. The Supreme court has “robbed” the world of the descendants of these people.

The Prophet Who Condemned the King

Hezkiahu was a king of Israel. The prophet Samuel came up to him to tell him a message from Hash-m / G-d. He said the King “will die and not live.” The question is posed – why the double language. Obviously if one will die, they will not live. The Torah answers – that King Hizkiyahu was to die in this world and not live in heaven. Hizkiyau was a righteous king. What was his transgression that warranted this punishment?

He refused to have children. With an understandable reason – he saw through Ru-ah’ HaKodesh / A Holy Vision – a manner of seeing the future – that his descendant would be Evil in G-d’s eyes.

The Prophet Samuel told him – this is not your concern. You must do the will of G-d as it says in the Torah. One of the Commandments of the Torah is to Be Fruitful & Multiply – for Jews & Gentiles. Regardless of the character of your descendant – whether you had a vision that he would be evil or righteous – you must fulfill the commandment of the Torah. King Hizkiyahu agreed. He Decided to marry the daughter of the Prophet Samuel in hopes that the merit of the righteous father, mother & grandfather – the resulting child would be righteous.

Hizkiyahu’s descendant – the Child that they had – was evil. He served idols. He Killed and committed other transgressions to anger G-d. One day he was being pursued by his enemies and he called out to all his false gods. He received no answer. The enemies were still in hot pursuit. Then He called out as a challenge to the G-d of Israel – “G-d of Israel – if you really exist and you save me – I will repent.” G-d did save him and He did repent.

G-d gave us a commandment to have children. Regardless of ones reasons not to have children – they will be held accountable for not bringing a unique individual into the world.

Survival from Nibiru – Reinforcing the Spiritual Torah Values.

Nibiru or Planet X is approaching. Many people have taken pictures of it. It is possible it is the star that passed by the earth about 3,600 years ago that caused the great flood of Noah. It is possible that this is the Star that the Gentile Prophet Bilaam Talked about in his prophesy in the Torah – Darach CoChav MiYaakov – A Star from Jacob will trample … (Bamidbar /. Numbers 24: 17 -18). Some explain that this star will cause mass havoc. That It will cause inhabited places to become uninhabitable. The Chance of Survival – apparently is one in three. I believe that that is the statistic that is quoted in the Torah about the survivors.

So Aligning oneself with Torah Values – whether one is Jewish or Gentile – is the best spiritual preparation for surviving Nibiru. (Ie, accepting the Torah as one’s guide – by accepting to eventually do the 7 Noahide laws – for Gentiles or Accepting to follow the 613 Commandments from the Torah – as written in the Shulchan Aruch / Code of Jewish Law by R. Yosef Karo.) Just as it was for in the time of the Flood. Unfortunately, then many people didn’t believe or didn’t repent. Hopefully, this time around many more people will survive.

Removing the Thorn From Your Heart

TulipsI’ve encountered a variety of responses to a simple question –

“Hello. Do You Know the Time?”

– It’s 6:45.
– “Sorry, I don’t have a watch.”
– Ignore
– “What’s the matter? You can’t say please!”

One may encounter people who act or react out of the normal range of behavior.

Yes, we must try to be sensitive to people’s sensibilities. But we can train ourselves to not be ruffled by those who respond in a aberration to the normal.

The Rambam wrote about a person who was traveling on a ship. He was sleeping under the stairs. A wealthy individual, who disdained the poor man decided to urinate on him. The poor man, was surprised but not upset or ruffled by this gross demonstration of disrespect.

The poor man was actually happy. He said it was one of the happiest days of his life. When he reached a level to not be upset by the behavior of others towards himself, he realized that he was truly independent. Independent from the thoughts and acts of others.

His happiness was completely dependent upon himself. Others could not ruffle him or cause him sadness.

Some live their lives based upon what others will think. If others praise them, they are happy. If others denigrate him, he is sad.

The Torah teaches us various lessons to become a person, independent of other’s actions.

1. Judge others favorably – is someone did something against you , you can judge them with the benefit of the doubt.

2. Build your self esteem, to not need approval of others for happiness.

3. Focus on Making Hash-m happy. If that is one’s main concern, what others do or say become secondary or close to irrelevant. As long as I am doing what G-d wants from me from the Torah, I am doing fine.

Apparently that’s what it means in Pirkei Avot “Jealousy, Pursuit of Honor and Desires take a man from the world.” Why those things? Apparently when one lets the above three rule his life, he is dependent upon others for happiness.

If one instead puts G-d’s satisfaction as his or her primary concern, he or she puts their happiness in their own hands. Their happiness in not dependent on others.

At times we ourselves act with hostility or anger. It is up to us to discover and pinpoint what causes this negative attitude.Was it a lack of respect on the part of the other? Chalk it up to a bad day.

Is it something they did? Forgive and forget!

But also we can ask ourselves why is that a sensitive point for me? Once you have an answer you can work on strengthening your resolve to not be affected. Eventually, you live a better life – for it becomes impervious to the arrows (intentional or unintentional) of others.

When a Gorilla Dies. Torah Views of the Cincinatti Zoo Incident.

I felt badly for Harambe – a Gorilla killed when a child fell into his cage at the Cincinatti, Ohio Zoo recently.

The Torah has laws that forbid causing pain to animals (Tzaar Baalei H’aim). One reason for this law is to prevent people from becoming cruel. One who is cruel with animals, may become cruel to humans. (The Nazis used to inculcate insensitivity to cruelty by having soldiers raise a kitten for many months and then commanding them to kill it with their bare hands.)

Once Rabbi Yehuda HaNasi was walking in the Marketplace. A Lamb, that was to be slaughtered, quickly approached him to hide under his robe. He sent it away gently. He said “Go little Lamb, for this is why you were created.” In heaven, they judged that that was a lack of sensitivity and determined that he should be stricken with tooth pain. He endured the tooth pain for 13 years, until one day his maidservant was trying to hit little scurrying creatures in his house with a broom. He told her “Don’t hit them. Push them out gently.” Soon after his tooth pain stopped.

Noah was rewarded for his great kindness in taking care of the animals while in the ark.

One of the first laws given to Noah of the Noahide Laws, incumbent upon all mankind deals with animals. A Jew and a Gentile are prohibited from eating a limb taken from a live animal (Ever Min Ha H’ai in Hebrew)

Human Life Takes Precedence

One does not know what would have ensued had the guard not shot Harambe to protect the child.  Ultimately, according to Torah – he did the right thing. A human’s life always takes precedence over an animal’s life and usually, over Mitzvot.

The Torah commands Jews to observe Shabbat – one of the greatest commandments of the Torah. On Shabbat, one does not light fire or to cook. Yet, If one’s life is in danger, we must “desecrate” the Shabbat to save a life.

Life Takes Precedence.

If a man intends to kill an innocent person, one has the right to kill or maim the pursuer. If maiming is possible, it is preferable. At times, We are to kill to save the innocent person or people.

Mother – Negligence or Accident?

Should the mother of the boy be charged for the value of the Gorilla? Apparently not. Perhaps she was negligent, in letting her child roam around or perhaps it was a complete accident – children have ways of fleeing without the discretion of parents. A parent is responsible to pay for the damages of a child.

The Fence

The gate of the fence initially was 36 inches high – now the Zoo made it 42 inches. We have a law in the Torah to place a fence on a roof, to assure that no one falls off. This fence must be 10 Tefachim / Handbreadths.

Rabbis Differ about the measurement of a Tefach.

According to Rav Moshe Feinstein, the Tefach is 3.54 inches (9.00 centimeters). According to Rav Chaim Noeh, the Tefach is 3.15 inches (8 centimeters). According to the Chazon Ish, the Tefach is 4 inches (10.16 centimeters).

So According to the Chazon Ish, the initial size of the fence (36 inches) was problematic to use as a fence on a roof. He would have required it to be 40 inches. (10 Tefach x 4 inches = 40.) But apparently now they increased height to 42 inches it is good, according to him.

Why Gorillas Die

G-d does everything for a purpose. Even Harambe’s death must have a divine message or purpose to us.

Divine Message

Everything that occurs one can learn from. Each of our deeds has repercussions. If one person gets angry, he might cause a negativity to fill the air to cause another person to kill. (There was a true story like that). If a person or animal is killed, perhaps it is to make people feel badly that they will repent for not having fulfilled the word of G-d found in the Torah. Because of this this incident may serve to provoke us to do Teshuva / for past misdeeds.

Divine Purpose

The Torah states that in the generation that created the Tower of Babel – G-d punished them by changing their language. Some people, were changed into monkeys and elephants. (Talmud (Sanhedrin 109a)) It is interesting to note that those three animals are usually more intelligent than others. Was Harambe a soul from the generation of the Tower of Babel? I don’t know.

At times people are reincarnated. An interesting expose on the subject can be found in “The Coming Revolution” by Rabbi Zamir Cohen. In one chapter, he presents different humans that had similar physical traits and mental aspirations and achievements.

A person who transgresses Torah law may punished for sins that they did by becoming reincarnated into a rock, plant, or animal. Was Harambe a Gilgul of a person who sinned and possibly killed someone? Possible but I really don’t know.

One thing we do learn from the whole incident is to be extra careful with children. Keep them from animal cages. Don’t leave them alone in a Zoo, or a house or car – for that matter.

Lessons To Learn & Ways to React Positively

The Torah has many laws to not cause pain to animals. Kosher laws – teach us how to treat animals that are to be eaten. Kosher Animals are slaughtered in a way to not cause any pain to the animal.  Perhaps a great lesson to learn from the tragedy is – those Jewish people who still eat non-kosher, may want take upon themselves to start eating kosher.

Those Gentiles who are not careful about Ever Min HaHai / eating a limb taken from an animal that was still alive – can take upon themselves this Mitzvah. (Sometimes – certain meat factories start cutting up animals while they are still moving – one who eats from that meat – transgresses the Torah prohibition of Ever Min HaH’ai.)

We can always take the positive in every difficulty. G-d gives us challenges to overcome, and life lessons – sometimes difficult – for our benefit & for us to better ourselves.

Disarming Your Emotional Fellow

Some people are highly strung. One word can trigger them. Maybe even one look.

Some are predisposed against certain people or questions.

I asked a person “Are You Jewish?”

They responded “That is an insult!”

I asked “If someone asked you “Are you an Accountant? – would that insult you?”

He responded “Yes.” I guess he wouldn’t like to be an accountant.

(Come to think of it Saying “Being Jewish is an Insult” is an Insult – but I let it slide.)

Some people were hurt in the past. Some have a disposition against you, because they heard something bad against you. So they act with an angry disposition towards you.

Rabbi Yitzi Greenman, a Fund-Raiser for Aish HaTorah tells of a story of a Wealthy individual who had an angry disposition towards Orthodox Jews. He was patient and persistant and eventually turned around that disposition to eventually get the man to give a sizeable donation.

So whose problem is it, if someone is angry at you? If you really hurt the other person – or perhaps you angered them – it would make sense to make amends – if the relationship is worth it. (In cases of marital / couple relationships an Orthodox Rabbi would be proper to consult before returning with a spouse that is abusive)***

But sometimes it’s not you. They had a bad day. They listened to “lashon hara” / evil speech about you or your kind. So it is not your fault. Something is wrong with the other person’s disposition.

The Torah gives the ultimate response to disarm a person –

“A Soft Answer turns away Wrath.” (Shlomo Hamelech / King Solomon in Mishlei / Proverbs 15:1) When someone is angry, the best response is not to stoop to an escalation of anger. The best is to remain in control. A soft answer helps one to both and disarm the angry fellow.

==

***Also, in cases of Intermarriage – it would be better to just walk away – because of the Torah law – prohibiting it. The Torah tells us (Devarim 7:3-4) “Don’t marry with them – don’t give your daughter to his son, and don’t take his daughter for your son; lest he should turn your son away from Me, and they will worship other gods…”) (The Jewish View of Marriage) (Law on Intermarriage) (Meaning in Mitzvot – Intermarriage) Usually a child of a mixed marriage is confused. They are not sure where they belong. Besides the Torah’s reason, It is unfair to the children that may result from such a union. People who start off on the same wavelength, usually have more successful, happy marriages.

The Big Move & the Russian Cleaning Man

It was the eve of our move. We were leaving our apartment to move closer to my parents. We did what we could to leave the apartment clean and in good condition before we left.

My father used to say : “When you go to a place, make sure when you depart it is better than when you came.” That is a great principle in life.

If you have a job – make sure the place of work is better than when you came. If you live in a community – make sure it is better when you leave than when you came. Yaakov / Jacob made wells in his town of Be’er Sheva. He left the place better than when when he arrived.

Apparently that is our objective in life. When we leave this world it should be a better place because of our actions.

Back to the story … We called a company that sends over cleaning help. We were surprised when a big Russian man knocked on our door. “Hi. I came to help you with the cleaning.” After he walked in, we thought – “Not what we expected.” But we were courteous and explained to him what we wanted clean.

We still didn’t understand why G-d arranged that he be the one sent to clean.

Then – we got it.

We had tons of baggage to bring down the stairs, to load into our rental car. We needed someone strong to bring the baggage down and help us load the vehicle. He was the perfect person for the job.

What we thought was a fluke – that a big man was sent to clean, was really a blessing – he helped us to carry our belongings down the stairs and load them.

We sometimes second guess G-d’s actions – “Yeah, we know better.” Really, He knows what’s good and what is good for us in particular.

If we are properly attuned and live the Torah outlook, in the end, we will be able to discern – that all that happened to us is for the good. We will be able to live constantly with that philosophy that “All that the Merciful One does, He does for the Good.” Instead of complaining about the bad, we will see the good in all situations. We will live life with a positive attitude – instead of a negative view.

Sometimes it takes a big Russian man for us to realize.

Becoming Significant in a Throwaway Society

As I youngster I was a sci-if fan. Not an official Trekkie, but I did like Star Trek. In the episodes at times an unknown crew member would appear who My friends would call an expendable crew member. During the course of the episode they would expire.

The main characters would remain. (By the way, did you know Spock and Kirk were Jewish?)

Our job in life is to break out of the flow of society and to do something significant to better the world. To break out of our comfort zone if the truth or Torah demands. Society pushes you to follow the maxim: “Drink and be merry for tomorrow you die.” Judaism adds one small point to that caveat – but accomplish something to better the world before you do.

Our goal is to better the world. That is what G-d expects of us.

Self-Improvement / Mussar

One way to better the world is to better ourselves. Intriguing that many know this already for the best selling books are cookbooks and self-improvement works. Why self-improvement? Apparently people intrinsically know that is one of the goals in life.

Torah taught self-improvement for thousands of years. Some classic Torah works on self improvement  / also known as Mussar works include – Messilat Yesharim / the Path of the Just, Shaarei HaAvodah by Rabbeinu Yona of Gerondi, Shaarei Teshuvah – the Gates of  Repentance, Duties of the Heart, The Ways of the Tzaddikim–Orchos Tzaddikim

A person who wants to make their acts more significant may start by learning to better themselves. Studying the above works – with a rabbi, a friend or even alone is an excellent starting point.

Knowing What is Good & Evil

Apparently people intrinsically know also what is good and evil. Yet the heart of man can deceive a person to think what is good is evil or vice versa. Look at people who condone terrorism. Obviously terrorism is wrong and evil, but people can find justifications for it.

Thus everyone can be tricked to think what is good is evil. Everyone who doesn’t believe in G-d can be fooled. And many who do believe in G-d are fooled. Look at the inquisition, auto-dafe, the crusades – all done in the name of religion.

No one is immune. Religions are accused of being cruel by atheists. Religions accuse atheists of being cruel. Both have some truth to their accusations.

So where is the truth?

The simple answer:

Torah.

Why Torah? There are thousands of Religions in the world. Atheism on a logical standpoint is illogical. Can you really believe that every single cell, every single animal, every single living plant, every single microscopic organism was created by random molecules flying around? It is illogical. As Spock would say.

Ok. So there is a G-d. How do I know he cares about what I do?

The Only Divine Revelation to a Nation

Basically G-d appeared only once in the history of man to a nation of millions of people – when G-d gave the Torah to the Jews about 3,000 years ago at Mount Sinai. He never repealed His laws. Thus they are still in effect.

In the Torah, G-d gave commandments for all people and commandments for the Jews.
G-d gave the 7 Noahide laws in the Torah to the Jews to teach mankind – for all people of the world to follow. He gave the Jews 613 commandments – as explained in the Shulchan Aruch, the Jewish Code of Law by Rabby Yosef Caro.

True Morality

Many religions committed atrocities in the name of religion. Atheists and idol-worshippers did the same. But the Torah is G-D’s word. True morality. The yardstick to use to know what is truly morality.

Let’s take one statement of the Torah. It says :

A person who is merciful with the merciless ends up being merciless to the merciful. 

One can understand it in one way – that by constantly being “merciful” with killers one ends up developing traits of cruelty. But there is a more basic explanation. Some people today condone Terrorism. They say, the terrorists, were oppressed by a nation (usually, they point the finger to Israel) and thus one should have mercy upon them.

The problem is is that when one gives no consequences to evil – those people end up doing more evil to the innocent. So by a person being merciful to the merciless, he ends up being merciless to the merciful, the innocent, the frail and helpless.

The first step in making one’s life more significant is to align one’s outlook and philosophy with that of the Torah. Then one can do true kindness. You do kind with the kind. And punish the wicked for their crimes.

What is Tolerance? Tolerance vs. Decadence

People have mixed up what is tolerance. Tolerance is not accepting any person’s wicked actions – that is decadence. According to Torah, Tolerance is being respectful to all people regardless of their actions. But if they committed or want to commit actions against others – they are punished or prevented.

The Torah is not naive. It says a person who wants to kill an innocent person, get up and kill that person. If a person says they want to kill others, we don’t hand them a gun – or a bomb for that matter.

In Pirkei Avot (Ch. 2 Mishna 4) it Sums it up Nicely on  Doing the Will of Hash·m:

4. He (Rabban Gamliel son of Rabbi son of Rabbi Yehuda Hanasi) used to say, make His [G·d’s / Hash·m’s] will as your will in order that He will make your will as His will. Nullify your will before His will in order that He will nullify the will of others because of your will.

Knowing what G-d wants, and seeing His philosophy from Torah – allows one to think clearly about morality. It is not the heart that directs the mind. Or one’s supposed “thought out position” that drives a person. It’s G-d’s will.

You Are What You Read

I used to learn with a rabbi who basically explained – that You are what you read. A person who constantly reads the New York Times begins to have the same positions as their writers.

If a writer is anti-Israel – the reader may develops an anti-Israel attitude. If the writer has a liberal attitude one becomes more liberal.

If one learns Torah – ie, a Gentile about the Noahide Laws and a Jew about the Shulchan Aruch – one learns morality the way G-d defines it.

Ultimately G-d is good. We with our limited mind cannot fathom His kindness at times, but eventually in this world we will find out why everything that G-d does is good.

Thus, if we cannot understand G-d’s laws – it is up to us delve into them until we understand them. The mistake many make is they jump to a conclusion that either they are more moral than G-d or that they need not G-d to know morality.

Abraham & Morality

Abraham learned morality from his Innards. Apparently, he was so truthful with himself and others – he was able to learn truth from his innate, sincere and complete honesty. He also learned in a Yeshiva of Shem and Ever – descendants of Noah.

But really there cannot be morality without Torah. The Atheists that say they need not G-d to know morality are only affirming their morality usually by condoning the laws that were in the Torah for thousands of years. In the time period when Abraham, our Forefather was alive, people were sacrificing their children on altars. That was the morality of the day. Abraham, fought the world and taught them that it is immoral to kill.

A person living in that time period would also be able to condone child sacrifice. They would be able to deny the morality of the Torah. But now with hindsight we know that the Torah was right in condemning child sacrifice and the idol worshipers were wrong.

At the end of one’s life, one should look back and be thankful of what the added to better the world. One should not be like those expendable crew members, that are there just to fill up the scenery.

Eventually, people will realize that the values of the Torah are true values. The ones that learn them earlier than later will have a greater chance to achieve their potential in life – for they let their lives be directed by the master of all morality – G-d.

Interaction without Communication – Thinking Technology

Thinking Technology


Everything in the world can be used for good. G-d gave the gift of technology to man. The Idea is to use it for the good – Just like the qualities that G-d endowed us with. We can use them for the good or the opposite. Our Job in life is to use our qualities to achieve our potential. As the Mesillat Yesharim says – it is up to us to pinpoint what is our obligation to achieve in life.
Noah was one the creator of the plow. Although he, did a service to mankind to make us more efficient – it also made man feel less dependent upon G-d. Without the plow, people would turn to G-d to ask for sufficient crops – enough to feed their families. Now with the plow, their output was greatly increased and gave them the impression that they were not so dependent upon Him. They tus turned to Him less and less.
As with everything – it is important to weigh whether the technology will help us establish a greater relationship or improve our service with man & G-d or detract from it. 
Sometimes I feel like distancing myself from all this hi-tech world and focus on relationships. Focus on communicating with people. Taking a trip to the great outdoors is one option. Observing the Shabbat is another – where engaging technology is prohibited – is another. Shabbat allows us to remove ourselves from hi-tech and focus on relationships – with family, friends, community & G-d.
Interaction without Communication. 
Rabbi Pelocowitz, former Rabbi of a Synagogue in Far Rockaway said – this generation is one that is based on Interaction without communication. Technology use is a common culprit.
Many people have bought TV’s – which may have caused more shallow relationships with their family members. Instead of interacting directly together, they interact with the central focus on a screen & lead to the breakdown of many family values. (Compare the values of the 60’s to those of today.) 
Certain Jewish movements have adapted using the car on Shabbat – which eventually led to the breakdown of a once close-knit community. Instead of all staying together, with the synagogue as a central meeting place – their Shabbat mobility lead them to abandon community for shopping.
One of the greatest gift’s that G-d gave us it the ability to think. 
The smart person keeps his mind on enhancing himself, his surroundings, his relationships with G-d and man. Weighing the advantages and disadvantages of technologies before adapting them – allows one to ultimately improve their quality of & meaning in life.

Tired of Typing? 5 Speech Recognition Programs for English & Hebrew

Years ago when typing an assignment in high school or taking a typing class we used a machine called a typewriter.
Then came the computer. I was one of the first people in the world to use a personal computer.

I was initiated to computers by my uncle, who lent me a TRS-80. I learned a little about programming in BASIC programming language on a Commodore Pet in School. My Brother-in-law gave me a Commodore 64. My father bought me an Apple II plus. Then everybody jumped on the bandwagon. (Too bad I didn’t buy stock in Apple at that time, but Gam Zu LeTova – Also this is for the good.)

Computers made things easier. With a typewriter, when you made an error – you had to use wite-out to correct it. The computer allowed to to change text on the screen and print it out again, instead of getting white paint on your fingers.
Increase in Efficiency
I read an article on how to move the cursor quicker. Instead of pressing the arrow-key 50 times to get to the second to last word in the line – It suggested you jump to the end of the line and then jump two words back. 3 keystrokes instead of 50.
I learned to improve my typing speed using software. Trying to become more efficient – I also used a word processor that would allow you to use short hand – instead of typing certain words and phrases, I could type an abbreviation and the entire phrase would appear typed. I remember using a MS-DOS program called PC-Write 3.0 – that had that function. I had a long list of shorthand words and their typed out equivalent. 
Then I learned of speech recognition software. Basically – you dictate and the computer does the typing.
Some statistics: 
  • An average professional typist types usually in speeds of 50 to 80 words per minute.
  • Using speech recognition, one can easily achieve over 100 words per minute with more than 95% accuracy.
The Best Program I found was Dragon Naturally Speaking – by Nuance. It runs on the Windows platform. They now have it for the Mac. It can also be run on a Linux Operating System using WINE (which allows one to run Windows programs on a Linux system.) I got it to work on a Fedora (a certain Linux distribution).

A person speaks faster than they type. Thus it helped me to become more efficient with typing text.

Recently though – I was searching for speech recognition in Hebrew. At times, I do write in Hebrew. I found:
1. Nuance, I believe has an engine that allows dictation of Hebrew.
2. The Chrome Browser allows one to download an App that can transcribe – English. There is another App , run on Chrome (by Google) that allows Hebrew. It is called Speechlogger.

3. Siri – found on Apple Ipads can be configured to type notes in Hebrew as well as in English. Those notes can be then shared with other other systems.

4. Google Voice found on Android Systems can also do speech to text dictation in English and Hebrew.

5. For those who are more techies – One speech recognition program is called Simon that can be configured to type in Hebrew. Those who are programmers can look into Sourceforge site that has programs that also aid in speech recognition.

Preventing Emotions from Dictating Your Mood

An old woman was selling fresh fruits and vegetables on a peddlers cart. “Fresh Apples!” She shouted.

Watching were little children, awaiting the right time to make their move.

The leader gave the signal and three little boys each grabbed an Apple. They ran away with all their heart. The old lady, with no hope of catching the swift youth, yelled “come back little swindlers!”

Just then a person interjected “Excuse me Madame. I’d like to purchase some produce.” It was her best customer.

She quickly understood, to vent her anger on this person or even to show her anger, would jeopardize  her sales relationship with this client. She put on a great big Smile. “Hello Mr. Jones, so nice to see you!” She beamed.

In one moment, quicker than a bat of an eye she changed her mood.

We many a time let our emotions dictate our mood. Someone angers us. It ruins our day.

Really, this is not the Torah way.

The way of the Torah is to be in control of one’s emotions and mood.

In Pirkei Avot /Ethics of the Fathers it states “Jealousy, and Honor (seeking) and (following one’s) desires) takes a person out of the world. “

Why those three things? Apparently, each of those three traits makes one dependent upon others for happiness. If a person gives him honor, he is happy. If not, he is not. If a person has more than their neighbor, they are happy. If not, not. Desires also put one’s happiness in the hands of others.

If one’s happiness is dependent upon oneself, others cannot hurt you emotionally.

Boy am I angry! He called me a chicken.
What,  that guy didn’t say please.
Look what those people did!
What do you want me to do he got me upset!

It is mind over emotions, rather than emotions over mind.

“You ruined my day!” Is not a valid excuse. Our happiness, mental health and mood are to be in our hands, not in someone else’s.

Being moody is no longer out of one’s control.

You choose your mood. Don’t let others or your emotions dictate your state of happiness.

Emotional maturity was a hot topic several years ago.

Exercises exist to become Emotioanally independent.

One is to list all situations that trigger your emotions. List aside each your regular reaction. Then list your desired reaction or the best possible reaction. Then act out those situations in your mind. Imagine yourself reacting in the best possible way.

If one has a bad temper, Torah books exist to improve their temper. One is “Anger: the inner teacher” By rabbi Zelig Pliskin. He provides stories, methods and examples to reduce anger.

Anger may also be caused by lack of Emuna / Belief in Hash-m’s goodness in guiding the world.  An excellent book that helps one to improve Emuna / Belief in Hash-m is called Living Emunah – Living a Life of Serenity through Faith” By Rabbi David Ashear. The second edition has also come out recently.

Many of one’s traits depend upon one’s self esteem. If one believes in themselves, they need not put down others. They need not attack with venom when someone ruffles their feathers. They are more in control.

Going cold turkey on news can help one to get out of being depressed with all the news in the world. Knowing the headlines is fine, but being an addict to news can cause the blues.

There are many traits one can work on – stinginess, belief in G-d, lash on harsh / gossip & speaking badly about others, jealousy, honor seeking, etc.

Torah Study also helps a person to improve their attitude on life. The Torah hashkafa / outlook and just plain learning Torah helps a person to improve their character traits. In it one learns that one’s actions are purposeful and at times the gravity of one’s actions. An example, speaking badly of others – even if it it 100% true – called Lashon HaRah. Lash on HaRah can destroy lives even though it is just words one expresses, one can cause tremendous damage with words. One can also cause tremendous good as well.

G-d gave us tools to use them for the good, to use them to build, to use them to heal. Using them for the good is our job in life to make this world a better place one action at a time.
The next time you imagine