Monday, May 13, 2013

There is no Jewish Religion ...

When you host a guest in your home, don't you expect him to behave appropriately? Would it not annoy you if he sits on your dinner table, carelessly breaks a crystal, or spits on the carpet? Would it not further offend you if such crass behavior were to occur mindless of your presence?

This matter of etiquette is a metaphor of our lifetime on earth. We are the universe's guests. God is our host. He brought us into His world, giving us the incredible opportunity to live a life. Do we disrespect the master of this domain and behave ungratefully, or do we abide by His wishes and act appropriately?

You might ask, "But what constitutes 'appropriate behavior'? How is one to distinguish between what's really right from wrong?"

The creator of any complicated gadget always leaves a set of instructions how to correctly operate his invention. The same is true of the universe. We creatures too have been given a manual of instructions.

This manual happens to be the most widely read book in the world. It's no coincidence that it has been the most popular in human history, and still is today! It's no coincidence either that in the whole world hardly a home exists without one, or at least without the ability to get to one immediately!

The miracle of the Jewish people's supernatural survival, let alone their ever-thriving existence despite the eternal hatred, banishment and oppression they have to bear, ought to spur the questioner into seeing the answer in proper perspective - unless this fact that defies Nature also he sees as mere coincidence, in which case he leaves no room for reasoning.

The Jewish people serve as God's flashlight for others to see.

It's God's way to make sure we all have access to Him and His expectations of us. God wants man to use his human intellect to connect the dots.

Once it registers with the Gentile observer that the very existence of the Jewish people is a phenomenon that transcends nature, for it is the equivalent of a sheep that survives among 70 hungry wolves, he becomes very close to the answer he needs.

The Torah is more than just the glue that keeps the Jewish people true to their faith and miraculously assures their collective, if not individual, survival. The Torah is a manual of instruction also for the Gentiles of the world.

But, of course, unless the Gentile acknowledges this fact of life, and thereby appreciates the Jewish phenomenon, without taking offense to God's choice of people who represent Him, they will then be able to connect another few dots thereby.

Finally, when more dots are connected, they will begin to depict an arrow - an arrow of truth that points to Torah.

For in Torah lies buried treasure all people of intellect must discover. God has given the Gentile a treasure, as sure as he has set one aside for the Jew - and both treasures are found in the same Holy Book.

The Torah prescribes two modes of appropriate behavior in this domain of God; One prescription is for the Jew; The other, for the Gentile. The Jew has 613 commandments (plus ramifications thereof) he must follow. The Gentile has 7 (with its own ramifications); These are the so-called Seven Noahide Laws.

So, what constitutes proper conduct in God Almighty's abode? What behavior befits the King's palace? There are two, depending on who you are. One protocol applies for Jewish people, and one for Gentile people. There is no Jewish religion. There is no Gentile religion. Each group has its own role in the world. The Jew is the Torah's beacon. The Gentile is the world's just colonizer. Each has his own related set of commandments to follow. Anything else falls short of these requirements and lacks divine sanction!

So, how many religions exist in the world? Who knows and who cares, for in fact there ought be none! Torah endorses only two modes of proper conduct, one for Jew and one for Gentile, no more, no less. You can't beat this elegant simplicity, nor the inherent synergy.

1 comment:

  1. Spits on the carpet??!! During "Oleinu"? ;-)