Monday, September 19, 2005

The Fakers of other Religions

I was once told by a friend of mine that the reason why she is so religiously inclined to Judaism is because she is sure that it is right and the members of other religions don't actually think their religion is true, they just say it is so that they don't have to shoulder the burden that is Orthodox Judaism. And that it is only in Judaism where members actually study their religious texts, since in other religions they know well enough to not study them too hard or they'll see all the obvious holes.

Having that come to me, a person who has spoken to many people from many religious views and who knows firsthand how seriously they take them, it astounds me that she thinks that her views are grounded in any sort of reality.

But this is after she just got back after spending the summer in the brainwashing institute which is Neve Yerushalaim and was taught by none other but the famous Lawrence Keleman (author of Permission to Believe, etc.), so I'm not totally shocked.

6 comments:

Mis-nagid said...

There's a term for such a person: Godiot.

respondingtojblogs said...

She sounds like a GH strawman, but I am actually intimately familiar with the feeling. Ah, my youth.

Sarah said...

Sigh ... a perfectly good Tanach shiur was ruined for me the other day when a naive freshman argued that it didn't make sense for Ramban and Radak to argue with Rashi over what was pshat because he was giving "divrei mussar" and we should never question that.

I tried to explain that one should be loyal to the text, that "difrei mussar" may completely skew what the text is saying and even go completely contrary to it, and that the time ppl misinterpret Rashi and have no idea what he's really getting at because they don't understand basic pshat ... but no ... she insisted that all we need is "divrei mussar", and anyone who comments otherwise doesn't make sense.

Oy.

Orthoprax said...

Sarah,

That's the difference between learning and "learning."

I think it's only in religious studies where "truth" has multiple meanings and where something can be backwards and still be beyond question. People who "learn" have zero critical thinking skills.

It was only when I found out that there can be an actual goal to learning (i.e. to understand the text better) when I began to find interest in it. Of course, such real learning took me far away from Orthodoxy so it makes sense that it is not supported well by OJ.

Orthoprax said...

Sarah,

That's the difference between learning and "learning."

I think it's only in religious studies where "truth" has multiple meanings and where something can be backwards and still be beyond question. People who "learn" have zero critical thinking skills.

It was only when I found out that there can be an actual goal to learning (i.e. to understand the text better) when I began to find interest in it. Of course, such real learning took me far away from Orthodoxy so it makes sense that it is not supported well by OJ.

satyaman said...

>>>they just say it is so that they don't have to shoulder the burden that is Orthodox Judaism.>>>>
3 points
1.There are fundamentalist versions of Hinduism, Islam, etc that would make anyone beg to be an orthodox Jew
2.Another classic example of ascribing selfish motives to those who differ
3.Another classic example of just how narcissistic orthodox Judaism can be.

>>>And that it is only in Judaism where members actually study their religious texts, >>.

This is so completely false that you really have to be an ignoramus to believe this.-One example:The Vedas studied by pundits and others in India are taken quite seriously and to be a true bukke in their tradition is every bit as arduous as ours.

>>>And that it is only in Judaism where members actually study their religious texts, since in other religions they know well enough to not study them too hard or they'll see all the obvious holes.>>

How ironic