Monday, January 16, 2017

Several of my FB posts from the past little while

If I may make this observation:
There are some of us who think we were made from the dirt of the earth, and some of us who think we were made from stardust.
The goal of the former is to realize that the dirt is also really the dust, and the latter to realize that the dust is also really the dirt.

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I think an important point to remember is that Gd created you to live. It's important to try and work on yourself, to have more kavana, to be a better person. But Gd also wants you to be present, to enjoy living, and to enjoy the world that He created. Remember that being a good Jew and enjoying the present aren't exclusive.

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Religious people are like Batman, and atheists are like Joker.
Here me out:
The difference between Batman and the Joker isn't essentially a rational disagreement, but one of personal comfort. Both of them had that one day where their lives spiraled out of control. Batman reconciled his tragedy by clinging onto the notion of Justice - there is an order to this world and it's his obligation to defend it. The joker however embraced the absurdity and chaos that he feels is rightly representative of the actual state of existence.
The important part to remember though is that they need each other. There is no Batman without the Joker and visa versa.
Likewise, one can't be fighting for Justice and absolutism without the possibility of absurdity.
So what we're ultimately left with is prickly goo and gooey prickles to quote Alan Watts.
One system can not exist without the other, and ultimately they both exist together.
Or both don't exist, you decide.

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I feel like a lot us (myself included) are somewhat detached from what actually is, sheltering ourselves in the fantasy of what we would like it to actually be.
With the rampant use of "I am allowed to believe in what I want", and the lack of requirements to what constitutes a valid "belief system", we are encouraging people to be their own creators of reality.
People are substituting what they want to be true, with what they believe to be true. Just because I would feel better in a world where reincarnation existed, does not demand that it does.
(For clarity: this isn't to attack anyone who does believe in reincarnation. Believe in whatever you want to believe - just ask yourself why do you believe in it. The same thing applies to our life choices, our relationships, and anytime we take a stance on any opinion.)
I wonder what the world would look like if we candidly approached reality with what is actually going on, rather that what we hoped went on.

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When I was a child, I remember learning that the way to find out if an inclination is from the Yetzer Tov is if it changes your action for the better.
That idea never resonated with me, it seemed to over simplify a person's feelings for Gdliness, disregard the complexity of a relationship.
But as I look back at it now; it's truth rests deep within.
The world is complicated, our hearts even more so - and on most days even the hope for clarity seems fanciful. But we are granted a marker: when examining a feeling or experience, ask yourself if this is leading you to be a better person. Not if you feel more clarity, not if it grants you solace from suffering; does it make a positive change in the world?