Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Faith

Emunah/Faith.
Do I have Emunah?
Do I feel that Emunah is the foundation of my life?

I don't know.

Theres an idea called "G-d of the Gaps", in where you use G-d to fit in all the holes that are left by human knowledge. For example: humankind once used G-d to explain earthquakes and plagues, and now use G-d to explain "beyond the universe" and the "afterlife". I don't call that faith, and I wouldn't call that believing in G-d. You are using G-d as a fill in the blank and when science answers that problem, G-d is replaced. I find G-d is the reason behind science itself, and the answer behind everything. What I consider faith is an simple principle that G-d surpasses human knowledge and I appreciate that I don't understand and may/will never. However, the issue that bothers me is the nature of faith. I am not referring to the cult-like mentality of "don't question, don't ask". That whole idea irks me immensely as foolish and naive. That mindset opens the door for ignorance, radicalism, and fanaticism. I think the appropriate mindset would be that "after all I know, I will never know". The first way clashes with intellect and causes people to do things that breaks the very core of human morality and understanding. The second way appreciates and works with intellect, and that intellect itself leads one to the conclusion that there is more. This might break some of his current understanding, but just leaves the opening for more things to understand. I guess you can say that way #1 there is first emunah and that forms understanding, and way #2 is that first comes understanding and that leads to emunah. The accepted custom is think about it as much as you want for yourself, but don't go reading books or information about it. Don't discuss it with random people. Why not? If you hold like way #1 that conventional logic is flawed and untrue, then speaking or learning about it will confuse you. Don't try and mix logic that is rooted from the bottom up, to "true logic" that is coming from up down. But how do I know that my "faith" is any better than yours? In other words, why choose my religion over yours? If you answer with logic and explanation, you are in turn saying that in essence  logic is leading you to emunah, not the other way around. And if you don't answer, who says you are any better than arabic extremists who terrorize and kill. Your blind faith lead you to acts of goodness and kindness and there's the opposite. But it you were born into that lifestyle, who says you would be any different? They both come from the same source? Now if we are working with way #2, that logic leads to emunah, why is researching it prohibited. What are you afraid of? It logic leads to emunah, then the better you understand, the stronger your emunah will be. How much more confident can you be if you have gone through the opinions, weighed the options, and still came to the same conclusion. Just like if someone was in a cult or in a suicidal mood you would tell him/her to talk it over. It's your emotions clouding your intellect. Be open to other sides and opinions, don't allow yourself to be controlled. How would one know if he himself is that exact situation himself? Why must he spend his entire life in doubt if the life he is choosing is one he really believes in, or is that his community has decided his fate and he must just play along. This does not mean that one has to question everything he believes in, you can live your entire life being a skeptic and not follow anything. However, once someone doesn't feel comfortable the way he believes in as of now, he should definetly search for something more.
I am not saying that I have doubts in my faith, I feel that I was as objective as possible when making my decision. But the whole nature of it, and the potential danger that can arise from it seriously vexes me.  

Monday, December 9, 2013

Preface

Preface:

Why? Why am I writing a blog?
I think simply my objective is to document my journey. The journey being life of course. Yes I know it sounds cliche, even a bit egocentric. The "in thing" nowadays is to have your own opinion. It has to be radical, it has to be sassy, and you have to wave it around so that everyone knows that you disagree. Every Tom, Dick, and Harry becomes a critic. So what makes me "special"? Nothing, but it's precisely that. I don't claim to know anything definitively. I don't believe I have something unique that the whole world must know. So then what am I here to accomplish?
The way I see it, a lot of the issues, both personal and public, are due to ignorance. We make divisions, we establish "truths", and we ignore realities simple because we stay ignorant. Now, I don't define ignorance as stupidity and its counterpart intelligence. I define it as close-mindlessness and its remedy tolerance. Everyone has to have their own set of rules to how they guide their life, but have to open to the possibility that we don't all share the same opinions. But even on a personal level, we don't allow ourselves to grow unless we can define for ourselves what are our principles. Once we piece together where exactly we hold, we can then be able to collaborate with others. That is precisely my goal.
I believe that clarification and discussion are the greatest accomplishments. I think the more we understand, the more we discuss, the more we appreciate. I am therefore attempting to gather together my thoughts and beliefs, and make them open for whoever wants to hear or discuss.
I welcome you to join me on my journey...