Tuesday, March 08, 2011

// // 6 comments

Is There a G-d?

by Reb Gutman Locks @ Mystical Paths

Reader’s Question(s):

     I have so many questions:

        Is there a G-d?

        How does one discover G-d?

        What does a relationship with G-d feel like?  

        Which sect is the legitimate path to G-d? 

        Do you need a path to G-d?

        How can I develop a relationship with G-d?

     If G-d is real, then I don’t want to miss the chance of knowing G-d. I’m beginning to think that the atheist might just be right: “G-d is manmade,” and the proof of it is all the different religions and all the differences within them.

     I’ve asked the [x-ians.] They told me I was a “sinner” and deserved to die. When I was praying to [j-sus] my soul never responded. When I told my pastors, they told me, “You have to repent of your sins and accept that you deserve to die and accept [j-sus] as you lord and savior, because he died for your sins.”

     I asked the Muslims and they said I have to confess to Allah and Muhammad. When I was praying to Allah, my soul never responded. The Imams told me that I have to pray harder or it takes time.

     And now I’m asking you, the Jews.

Gutman Answers:

     If we could stand back far enough to get a view of the entire creation all at once (and also whatever might be beyond creation), we would realize that as huge and endless as it is, it is still all a single One. Next, we would see that in order for something to be truly infinite, it would have to be endless in all directions, and it would have to include all. Obviously, this means that there can only be one Infinite. Now, all this is but a tiny drop, or word, of the Creator.

     To understand your relationship to the Infinite, try to think in terms of the “Infinite” and the finite.” The Infinite is all, which has to include the finite beings, too. The finite beings are tiny areas within the Infinite. The Infinite fills and surrounds them, but still, the finite cannot claim to be the Infinite, because the finite is merely one finite entity, and it is not all of the other finites.

     Your “relationship” to the Infinite will depend on how you are viewing the Infinite One at that moment. When you conceive of G-d as the Infinite, then you are a tiny spec within the Infinite. When you conceive of the One as the Creator, you will call the Creator, “G-d,” and you will experience awe. When you see that G-d is the King, then you will relate to G-d as a servant, and you will be careful not to anger the King. When you see that G-d is the Father of Creation, then you will relate to Him as a child relates to his father, i.e. with love. All of these are valid ways to relate to G-d, and most of us relate to all of them, each at its own moment.

     The legitimate path for you, since you are a member of one of the 70 Nations, and not of the Jewish people, is to follow the Seven Commandments that G-d gave to all mankind. Your spiritual success will come when you excel in the path that you were created to follow.

     Of course we all need a path to follow. We are like midgets when compared to our righteous ancestors who paved the way. They knew so much more than we do that they were like giants compared to us. Yet, when we stand on their shoulders we can see even further than they did. When we follow the path that worked for them, the path that brought them to successful spiritual lives, then we too will succeed.

     But, be careful how you define spiritual success. Those religious “teachers” whom you spoke to advised you to become like they are. Do you see them as good examples of successful spiritual life? Do they worship the Infinite G-d? Do they condone killing those who refuse to convert to their beliefs? These are not signs of a successful path to G-d.

     We learn about G-d by studying and following His commandments. For instance, we learn that G-d treasures life, from the command not to murder. We learn that G-d respects families, from the command not to take another man’s wife. Study and fulfill the Seven Commandments given to all mankind, and you will develop a relationship with G-d.

      A proper path to G-d will be both physically and mentally healthy. It will be happy, and it will be rewarding. You will find yourself standing in the actual Garden of Eden. It all depends on your deeds.

6 comments:

Anonymous said...

WHat can you say to a Gentile who knows nothing about Judaism and is turned off by xtianity? For example (*and very important) when he asks, "Why do bad things like the "NZ earthquake happen?" People died, lost limbs and really suffered. He's not a believer and tragedies such as these only confirm his thoughts (in his mind) that there is no G.d.
I appreciate any advice.

A Talmid said...

Though everything Hashem does is good, we cannot understand it. Things can happen because of a previous incarnation. There are numerous reasons why seemingly bad things happen. But, imagine if everyone who sinned was struck by lightning and those that were good had everything they needed. Would anyone be bad? There would be no more free choice. It would be so easy to follow everything if we saw the rewards and punishments immediately.
Read "Garden of Emunah" from Rabbi Lazer Brody for more on this.

Anonymous said...

Talmid: It's much more complicated than just bad things happening in the world. The world itself is BUILT in such a painful and cruel way that just makes one wonder, who the hell made it like that?????? That's why bad things happen much more readily than good, it's just part of the world's nature. And the bad often gets UGLY while good is usually gone after a short time. Just look at history...
It's obvious to me that the world was created by an intelligent being, but I absolutely don't see a BENEVOLENT G-d creating such a HELL world. I don't actively deny it, but to believe in a benevolent G-d is very difficult.
Any answers? Talmid, Gutman, anyone else? I'm sincerely asking, not looking for trouble.

MR said...

Anon-

I hear the pain in your comments. I would have to agree that probably the best place to start is to read the Garden of Emunah.

Anonymous said...

I've seen R' Brody's emuna preaching and it's a bunch of FLUFF. It's good for entertaining sentimental grandmas but doesn't even come close to dealing with real questions. That's why I didn't want to touch the garden of emuna. Need something more real.
Anyone? If you show me that G-d is truly benevolent, I'll love you forever. Seriously. I really and sincerely want to see it. I sincerely hope that my current perception is wrong! Please show me. Talmid, Gutman, MR, any other good people? I'm listening.

Happy Birthday said...

17th of Iyar is my son's birthday!

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