Sunday, March 07, 2010

Modern Orthodoxy - Is it OK?


[Rabbi Mosheh Lichtenstein, a Rabbi at Yeshivat Har Etzion]

The short answer is - No.

First of all, I would like to define what I mean by modern Orthodoxy.

Modern Orthodox Jews are Jews who do not use motor vehicles or electrical devices on the Jewish Sabbath or holidays, who only consume kosher meat and who have separate dishes for meat and milk foods. However they also celebrate Israeli Independence Day and they believe that people are descended from apes.

Modern Orthodoxy represents a transitional stage between on the one hand Orthodox Judaism and on the other hand atheism. Sabbath and dietary observances are Orthodox while Zionism and evolution were founded by Theodor Herzl, a completely secularized Jew and Charles Darwin, an agnostic. Distinguished Talmudic scholars have almost unanimously rejected Zionism and evolution.

This is probably a common phenomenon, that when a new religion (in this case, atheism) appears, there are people who try to merge the old and the new. For example, when Scandinavia was first Christianized, some people apparently worshiped both Thor and Jesus.

Modern Orthodoxy does not represent a serious, stable religion. The grandchildren of today's modern Orthodox will presumably be either fully Orthodox or fully atheist.

To get some sense of the demographic decline of modern Orthodoxy thus far, it's worthwhile to examine the makeup of Orthodox Israeli Parliament members since the founding of the State until the present:

1950: modern Orthodox 9 ultra-Orthodox 5
1960: modern Orthodox 12 ultra-Orthodox 6
1970: modern Orthodox 12 ultra-Orthodox 6
1980: modern Orthodox 12 ultra-Orthodox 5
1990: modern Orthodox 5 ultra-Orthodox 13
2000: modern Orthodox 5 ultra-Orthodox 22
2010: modern Orthodox 3 ultra-Orthodox 16

Incidentally, essentially the same trend may be seen among American Protestant churches. The more liberal, or "mainline", churches are declining. They too are a transitional phase between Christianity and atheism.

In addition to the theological contradictions of modern Orthodoxy, there are also serious political issues. The largest modern Orthodox community at the present time seems to be Efrat, in Israeli occupied Palestine. Israeli occupied Palestine represents a major stronghold of modern Orthodoxy today, and the ownership of this region depends on the final status negotiations between the Israeli government and the Palestinian Authority. Quite possibly, the final internationally accepted border between Israel and Palestine will follow the 1949 Armistice line, which would mean the dismantlement of all the modern Orthodox communities on the West Bank.

79 comments:

Alex said...

Do you think that there are, say, 100 Jews who identify themselves as Modern Orthodox, who are "a better Jew" than you are? If you don't like the phrase "a better Jew" then substitute "who are doing better overall in the eyes of God."

jewish philosopher said...

Do you think that there are, say, 100 Jews who identify themselves as Messianic Jews, who are "a better Jew" than you are? If you don't like the phrase "a better Jew" then substitute "who are doing better overall in the eyes of God."

Anonymous said...

The reason for the change in representation in the Knesset is that modern orthodox do not feel the need to vote for modern orthodox candidates. Many vote for mainstream parties, and many traditional sefardim vote for Shas.

A full 30-40% of Israel's population is tradition/modern orthodox, and it is doing quite well.

Having said that, I agree that there is now an apparent shift towards the right, in the US and Israel. However, success at faster breeding doesn't imply anything about the truth of the religion. There will always be cycles of change in any demographic measure, as there was when secularism became popular in the first place.

jewish philosopher said...

Many ultra-Orthodox have boycotted the Israeli elections since 1948.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Haredim_and_Zionism#Involvement_with_the_State_of_Israel

So the religious affiliation of Israeli Parliament members is far from being a perfect reflection of the religious affiliation of Israelis as a whole, I think it gives us a general idea.

Anonymous said...

A tiny minority boycotts the election. So the ratios are way off. There about about 500,000+ heredim in Israel. According to your ratios, there would be fewer than 100,000 modern orthodox. Its a completely distorted picture of reality. In the West bank alone there are probably at least 200,000 modern orthodox. In Israel proper another million or so.

Many modern orthodox vote for the major parties or the right wing parties. They have "matured" and don't feel the need to vote with a religious block, like the insular heredim do.

Hardly an "unstable religion".

jewish philosopher said...

My guess would be about 300,000 modern Orthodox Jews world-wide today, and dropping rapidly probably to about zero by 2070.

The Leader, Garnel Ironheart said...

Your characterization of Modern Orthodoxy is incorrect.

While there may be Modern Orthodox Jews who incorrectly believe man is descended from apes, Modern Orthodoxy itself does not accept that and holds that God created us, first with Adam HaRishon.

It's like saying that since some Chareidim incorrectly believe that loshon horo against non-Chareidi Jews is okay, then Chareidism in general has no problem with loshon horo.

Modern Orthodoxy in its best form represents what traditional Torah-observance believed before Chareidism arose as a reaction to the rise of the Reform: a stable, God given halacha that allows its practitioners to interact with the modern world. There is nothing in the Torah, Oral or Written, against that and much to recommend it. Consider the writings of the Rambam or his son, for example.

jewish philosopher said...

"Modern Orthodoxy itself does not accept that and holds that God created us, first with Adam HaRishon."

Those people are not modern Othodox according to my definition in this post.

The Leader, Garnel Ironheart said...

Modern Orthodoxy comprised two groups:
1) behavioural
2) intellectual

Group 1 calls themselves modern Orthodoxy but generally limits its Orthodoxy to certain behaviours and rituals.

Group 2, however, follows in the lead of the Rav and his group which demands Orthodox thought and behaviour with a specific haskafic framework.

jewish philosopher said...

You can define it however you want to. I think I can easily find people who would say that any man with no beard or woman with shoulder length hair/wig is modern orthodox. That's why I carefully defined exactly what I mean.

The Leader, Garnel Ironheart said...

But I can turn the argument around. Those primitives who constantly attack people on the streets of Ramat Beit Shemesh for wearing "the wrong clothes" or who spray bleach on women with skirts made out of "the wrong materials" are card carrying Chareidim. Is that behaviour that Chareidism endorses?

You must differentiate between the movement's ideals and principles and the people who claim membership in it.

Here's another example from the other spectrum - officially, the Conservatives say they expect their members to keep kosher. 99% of them don't but still call themselves Conservative. A person can call himself whatever he wants. That doesn't mean the movement reflects his values, only that he fails to reflect his movement's

jewish philosopher said...

I think the definition I'm using here for "modern orthodox" is concise and accurrate. I think Zionism is a given and I haven't heard of anyone in the modern orthodox community picking on Natan Slifkin for his endorsement of evolution; just the opposite.

Anonymous said...

There are many modern orthodox who don't accept evolution. What do you call them?

jewish philosopher said...

Like who?

The Leader, Garnel Ironheart said...

You are failing to differentiate between the movement and some of the adherents.

Your focus is also faulty. What differentiates Modern Orthodoxy from Chareidism is not the degree of head covering or kashrus observed, or whether or not television is permitted or not. The difference is the approach to the evolution of halacha over time. That halacha evolved until the early 1800's is a given. One has onl to gain a passing knowledge in Gemara through the Rishonim and early Acharonim to watch how the halacha adapted to new situations and gave believing Jews an authentic way to interact with the world around them.
When the Chasam Sofer created Chareidism by shouting "Everything new is forbidden from the Torah" he created a movement founded on a contradiction. Since not everything new is forbidden by the Torah, it was a new thing to say it way. Chareidism thus was forbidden according to his own definition. Yet it stuck because it was a necessary reaction for his community in Hungary to deal with the Reformers. It did not stick elsewhere, like in Germany where Rav Shimshon Rafael Hirsch had to come up with Torah im Derech Eretz or in America where the Rav develops Torah u'Maddah. To say that Chareidism is the only legitimate expression of Torah Judaism is completely incorrect and calling Modern Orthodoxy a transitional stage between it and atheism is motzi shem ra of a very high order.

As for Zionism, although most Modern Orthodox are Zionist, Zionism is not a part of Modern Orthodoxy and isn't an essential value to it. Otherwise, like the Dati Leumi they would all live there.

Finally, most people in the Modern Orthodox community who know of the works of Rav Sliffkin don't pick on them because, unlike their Chareidi counterparts, they've actually read his material and know that there is nothing actually heretical in it!

jewish philosopher said...

It sounds like you're just using a "no true Scotsman" defence of modern Orthodoxy.

Anonymous said...

"Like who?"

Like all of the traditional sefardim in Israel and elsewhere-- they keep kosher, many observe shabbat, pray but are not heredim in dress or practice, and maybe don't wear a skullcap all of the time.

Another related point:

When people "leave" modern orthodoxy, the often reduce their devoutness but do not entirely leave their community. That is because MO was never black and white in the first place and they are not rebelling against an oppressive and repressive community. OTOH the "skeptics" from the heredi world leave totally-- both because their community utterly rejects them and because they are starved for the freedom of mind and spirit after so many years of brainwashing and oppression. So they feel the need to go "all the way", since there is no room for even a MO in a heredi household.

So I think it would be correct to say that heredism is a stepping stone to secularism and atheism, much more than MO.

Garnel Ironheart said...

How does that follow? It sounds like your responded to my 3rd to last comment, not my most recent one.
I repeat: one judges a movement by its principles, not its adherents, especially its weakest ones. If you want to criticize some Modern Orthodox Jews for not living by the principles of Modern Orthodoxy, I wouldn't be arguing with you. However, you are using the lax behaviour of a few to tarnish the majority of the faithful.

jewish philosopher said...

I'm simply defining modern Orthodoxy and predicting it's future.

You sound like you're referring to something more like a "Yekkie" German Jewish community. I'm not writing about that here.

jewish philosopher said...

"Like all of the traditional sefardim in Israel and elsewhere-- they keep kosher, many observe shabbat, pray but are not heredim in dress or practice, and maybe don't wear a skullcap all of the time."

Names of Zionist rabbis who condemn Darwin please?

"So I think it would be correct to say that heredism is a stepping stone to secularism and atheism, much more than MO."

we have a few drop outs (although less than mo) but we aren't deliberately blending judaism and atheism

Shalmo said...

I might add that despite Theodore Hertzl's prophet like status among so many Jews, few know that he was willing if not encouraging Jews to convert to Christianity, and even made deals on it with the West, so long as Jewry get Israel.

He valued Jews on an ethnic level, he had no value for Judaism per say!

jewish philosopher said...

Regarding Slifkin incidentally, I have read his books.

In "The Challenge of Creation" page 318 he writes that it is "reasonable to conclude that man developed from the animals" and page 323 "the human soul developed in the evolving animal when it became a man".

Clearly, no Adam and Eve, no Garden of Eden, we are descended from apes and no modern Orthodox rabbi seems to be bothered by that.

Garnel Ironheart said...

1) Shalmo is lying, as usual. Theodore Herzl did, at one point, mull over a plan to arrange a mass conversion for all Jews in Europe to Catholicism. Remember that he was completely assimilated and assumed that the only thing preventing Jews from being completely accepted by European society was their religion. However, once he began the Zionist organization, he abandoned that plan and no longer encouraged anyone to convert. There were no deals.

2) Rav Sliffkin bases his statements on statements by Ramban and Abarbanel. Have you looked at the sources he quotes before dismissing them? If the Ramban says that at first Adam was a basic animal and only after God breathed the "nishmas chayyim" into his body did he become human, why can't Rav Sliffkin point that out? Adam was the first creature to have a soul, hence he did exist.

Anonymous said...

@ Clearly, no Adam and Eve, no Garden of Eden, we are descended from apes and no modern Orthodox rabbi seems to be bothered by that

truth is easy to take

jewish philosopher said...

"Rav Sliffkin bases his statements on statements by Ramban and Abarbanel."

Not really. In "The Science of Torah" page 179 he admits that no traditional Jewish source explicitly states that man is descended from the ape.

What he does is he accepts Darwin as fact, period. Then, based on that, he starts trying to demonstrate that with a lot of imagination it doesn't really, exactly, necessarily contradict the Torah.

You could do that with anything. Why not accept Jesus as messiah and then look for quotes proving that it isn't really against Torah? Missionaries do that every day.

Joel said...

Why the name Chayim in the comments on failedmessiah?

jewish philosopher said...

What?

jajogluck said...

Modern Orthodoxy as an institution does not endorse evolution. In fact, I am currently living in typical Sephardi community in Kiryat Malakhi, Israel and among the population here evolution is laughed at, and keep in mind that these folks do not consider themselves "dati", let alond charedi. You may be confusing some elements of the MO community, such as settlers in Efrat or YU graduates with the institution in general.

Also, keep in mind that MO typically seeks to sidestep the issue altogether. Evolution is not mentioned at all in MO schools, neither pro nor con. MO as a culture focuses rather on the legal and halakihc aspects pertaining to the preservation of Judaism, not on the philosophical rationalization of Judaism and its conservative outlook.

Shalmo said...

Garnel everything you just wrote above proves my point that Hertzl had no problem selling Judaism for Christianity, so long as Jews get Palestine

For more in depth data on Hertzl and his willingness to mass convert Jews go here:

http://www.ziomania.com/herzl/Theodore%20Herzl%20and%20the%20Pope.htm

And JP you and I both know Garnel is a zionazi to the upteenth degree. On his blog he has more or less admitted that when it comes to zionism and Judaism, his loyalty to the former outweights his loyalty to the latter. In many ways zionism is a religion in of itself, made by secular jews. Garnel being a Dati Leumi, pretty much sets the record on why he is so eager to absolve Theodore Hertzl of his darker allegiances.

Worse things have been done by them: http://www.jewsagainstzionism.com/zionism/history.cfm

Anonymous (ZY) said...

I have repeatedly shown you that your definition of MO and your demographic figures, upon which you base this post, are all false, yet you persist in repeating them.

I repeat-- MO encompasses a broad group of moderately observant people with various beliefs about evolution. They don't just include "yeshivish" MO. These people encompass a large majority of observant Jews.

The fact that you don't wish to categorize them as MO is ridiculous but is your problem. If you want you can define MO as only those having the last name Lichtenstein, and you can claim there are only a few dozen MO.

Also, predictions about demographic trends are notoriously inaccurate, and in any case relate to outcomes in 50 years from now, long after you and I will be dead, therefore I don't care. The Chinese will probably take over the world by then, anyway, so make sure your kids learn Mandarin.

Slifkin, BTW, considers himself heredi, and his battle is with the heredi world. The MO do not believe in censorship or banning of books, and therefore the debate is irrelavant for MO. Slifkin can say what he wants.

jewish philosopher said...

The RCA seems fairly positive about evolution.

http://www.rabbis.org/news/article.cfm?id=100635

And no modern Orthodox rabbi has critiqued Slifkin. So I think the MO position is pretty clear.

ZY Anon said...

"And no modern Orthodox rabbi has critiqued Slifkin. So I think the MO position is pretty clear."

Because, unlike ultra-orthodox rabbis who don't care about sounding ridiculously ignorant, MO rabbis couldn't imagine criticizing the idea that if modern scientific findings conflict with Talmudic statements about nature, modern science prevails.

jewish philosopher said...

I think I sound quite well informed.

http://jewishphilosopher.blogspot.com/2008/03/evolution-science-hijacked-by-atheism.html

The MO are just Useful Idiots.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Useful_idiot

Philo said...

There is only one Modern Orthodoxy in my opinion. A catch phrase for it could be "Ultra-Orthodoxy in a t-shirt". Most MO people I know DO NOT ACCEPT EVOLUTION. There is nothing modern about the theological philosophy. The people who many of you are suffering to as "Intellectual MO's" are Conservatives.

jewish philosopher said...

I never saw a Conservative Jew who did not drive on Shabbos.

ZY Anon said...

The vast majority of world Jews are non-heredi.
Thus I would consider heredi Judaism to not be viable.
Eventually heredi Jews will separate themselves into a new religion since they will no longer recognize anybody else as Jewish.
So they will invent a new religion called heredism and become irrelavant.
A large part of the Jewish people, who live in Israel, are Israelis before they are Jews, which I consider to be a good thing. This was the fear of the anti-zionist rabbis, and it is coming true.

jewish philosopher said...

Actually we are the eternal people.

http://jewishphilosopher.blogspot.com/2010/01/eternal-jew.html

ZY Anon said...

"Actually we are the eternal people."
With a sprinkle of genocide every few generations.


The only reason that Heredim multiply in Israel is that they are sucking off the teet of the State. Take away their child payments and kollel subsidies, and make them do army service and work like everybody else, and their numbers will dwindle.

jewish philosopher said...

Whatever. We were here 3,000 ago and we'll be here in another 3,000 years. Read my post cited above.

ZY Anon said...

Actually the human race could make the same claim. So could the Chinese. But who cares?

You only care because you're here to talk about it. If Jews disappeared nobody including the Jews would care, like the Aztecs.

Its your god's bad joke to keep us going, at the cost of immense pain suffering.

I think the Chinese' gods must have been stronger, they seem to have done a better job keeping the Chinese people alive. Allah has also done a better job, for that matter.

jewish philosopher said...

By "people" I mean "religious community". We are the uniquely eternal religious community.

Regarding "cost of immense pain suffering" check out Jeremiah for some explanations of that.

http://www.mechon-mamre.org/p/pt/pt1101.htm

Incidentally, regarding "child payments and kollel subsidies", the kibbutzim apparently receive much more:

What was not originally anticipated was that the kibbutzim would "always be on the government dole, subsidized...with the border settlements the most heavily supported" (Sorkin 1995:17). Exact amounts of government support are not readily available for kibbutzim, but an example of the funds given to one moshav will illustrate the extent of the economic disaster.

http://www.artsci.wustl.edu/~anthro/courses/361/gordon.html

ZY Anon said...

What "economic disaster"?
The Israeli economy is in better shape that the US's and most european ones. Growth 4.2%, unemployment below 7%, strong local currency, decreasing total debt, deficit of 5% for 2009.

The subsidy of the kibbutsim did not create an entire underclass of unemployed people dependent on the state.

Shalmo said...

There already is a massive movement of Israelis to the West. So the opposite is happening, Jews are not moving to Israel, Israelis are moving to the West.

Germany in particular seems to be a healthy attraction for Orthodox. Considering the negative birth-rate in Europe, there might be plenty of room for Israelis.

Both Europe and North America have dwindling communities. In the last decade over half a million were lost to assimilation. In which case all the more reason to bring in Jews from Israel revitalize these communities.

jewish philosopher said...

"The subsidy of the kibbutsim did not create an entire underclass of unemployed people dependent on the state."

Socialism has created a state with a low employment rate, supported by foreign workers.

zy anon said...

"Socialism has created a state with a low employment rate,"

The relatively low employment rate is almost entirely within the Heredi and Arab populations.

jewish philosopher said...

That's Israeli politics. How much must it cost to provide security for all the West Bank settlers, who by international law should not even be there?

ZY Anon said...

Israel will leave most of the West Bank when they're convinced it will give them peace.

Baruch Spinoza said...

I am not sure modern othodox Jews believe they are descendents of apes or not.

But I certainly do! I believe we have descendendts of apes. But what do you believe? You believe that a talking snake told a rib-woman to be an apple from a magic tree, and that the rib-woman came from a man who himself was magically created from dust. At least my beliefs can be demonstrated through empirical observation. You believe in childish stories.

Even little children have difficulty believing in that superstitious story.

"Any system of religion that has anything in it that shocks the mind of a child, cannot be a true system." - Thomas Paine

jewish philosopher said...

"At least my beliefs can be demonstrated through empirical observation."

You've observed apes give birth to people. Fascinating.

"Any system of religion that has anything in it that shocks the mind of a child, cannot be a true system." - Thomas Paine

Which proves evolution false.

Anonymous said...

More stuff evolution has trouble expaining:

http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/03/100311123522.htm

How do the repair proteins know which genes are damaged?

Baruch Spinoza said...

"You've observed apes give birth to people. Fascinating."

Are you capable of responding without creating strawmen? I know it is hard for religious people to think clearly because they have a damaged brain but I was wondering if you are smart enough to know what a strawman is and is not?

There is no evolutionary theory which says apes gives birth to humans. Just like there is no evolutionary theory that says that Dobermans give birth to Pitbulls. However, through the use of breeding (which is artificial selection) on many generations we can achieve a pitbull from a doberman.

"Which proves evolution false."

Yes, because you have the strawmaned verson of evolution in your head because, like I said, the brain of a religious person is damaged and he cannot think rationally.

Remember, you are the one who believes in talking snakes. Remember, you are the one who believe people can live up to 950 years. Remember, you are the one who believes every species of animal was inside the Ark. Children are confused by these stories. Try telling Noah's Ark story to a little kid and listen to all the questions he asks. He will be completely confused. Because it is a story for people who have their brain damaged. Evolution, on the other hand, can be explained to children in an elegant way so that they would be able to think rationally about it.

jewish philosopher said...

Actually it's brain dead atheists who believe in the absurdity of evolution.

http://jewishphilosopher.blogspot.com/2008/03/evolution-science-hijacked-by-atheism.html

And the Deluge is no problem.

http://jewishphilosopher.blogspot.com/2008/10/biblical-deluge.html

Baruch Spinoza said...

"Actually it's brain dead atheists who believe in the absurdity of evolution."

Yes, the very same people who keep on winning those Nobel prizes in science. The great scientific discoveries of the 21st century, all of that was done by brain dead people.

But religious people who believe in talking snakes and who believe that a man can live inside of a belly of a whale for 3 days, no, those people are not brain dead. They are really really intelligent. In fact, they are so intelligent that they do not even have to justify their beliefs, that is just how smart they are.

"And the Deluge is no problem."

Haha, you just admitted that you believe that was a global flood and a guy who lived to the age of 950 who took every species of animals. Including those kangaroos that live all the way in Australia.

Wait, what about the talking snake?! You never said you believe in a talking snake. Do you also believe in a talking snake too? You must. Since after all you are the smart one who does not need to justify his believes. Do you believe in a talking snake? And what about Jonah who lived inside of a whale's stomach for 3 days? You believe in that too?

Seriously, now (ignoring my satire) you are really mentally challenged. You have no idea how to think rationally. You believe in childish stories. Tell me what is the difference between Jewish fairly tails and children bedtime stories?

jewish philosopher said...

"Yes, the very same people who keep on winning those Nobel prizes in science."

Being intelligent has nothing to do with being honest or moral. Do you think Stalin, Hitler and Mao were dopes?

Here's a look at a couple of present day scientists.

http://jewishphilosopher.blogspot.com/2010/02/portrait-of-professor.html

http://jewishphilosopher.blogspot.com/2007/09/portrait-of-scientist.html

"Wait, what about the talking snake?!"

Why is a talking snake more incredible than a bat using sonar to navigate? Or a talking person for that matter?

A worm turning into a person (Darwinism) now that's stupid. ROFLOL!!!

Tell me what is the difference between atheist fairly tails and children bedtime stories?

Anonymous said...

"Tell me what is the difference between atheist fairly tails and children bedtime stories?"

Atheists have evidence and reason supporting their opinions.

jewish philosopher said...

Oh sure. So do Buddhists, Christians, Muslims, etc.

Baruch Spinoza said...

"Being intelligent has nothing to do with being honest or moral."

You are changing topics here, which is not a surprise because you a brain dead person whose mind was ruined by religion. Do I even have to explain how you are changing topics here? You said "atheists are brain dead", I gave you a huge list of atheists who are Nobel Prize winners in science. You responded to saying "intelligence is not morality". What can of a response is that? It is a response of a retarded person who is unable to think critically, like yourself.

"Do you think Stalin, Hitler and Mao were dopes?"

No. What is your point? I said plently of great scientists where atheists, you bring up terrible people from history.Can you realize what a retard you are? What does this have to do with anything? And by the way Hitler was not an atheist. He has written in the Mein Kampf, "today I believe my actions are in accordance with the Almighty". Do you know the Nazi soldiers wore belt buckels that said, "Gott Mins Uns" which means "God with Us"? But of course you will not aknowledge what I said because you are a retard who will not know what evidence is even if it was staring him in the face.

And by the way there is a difference between intelligence and morality. Even if it was true that atheism was immoral (which you failed to have demonstrated, but of course you think you have because you are a religious retard) it does not make it wrong. Maybe the truth is immoral. Who ever said the truth must be moral?

What about all the immoral Rabbis who have sex with little girls? What about them? They are Jewish? They are not atheists. And what about the charachter Moshe from the Bible? He is one of the most evil charachters in the entire Torah. He ordered his men to kill the Moabites for adultery, ordered for killing the Amalekits, and so forth. And you praise him! What kind of person does that make you?
Let me ask you a question. If you were holding an Amalekite baby in your hands would you kill it?

"Why is a talking snake more incredible than a bat using sonar to navigate? Or a talking person for that matter?"

Asking this question just illustrate how religion poisons the rational mind of a person. You are a retard if you cannot answer your own question. We never seen a talking snake and we have no reason to believe in one. A talking person, we have seen, a bat with sonar we have seen. When did you see a talking snake?

Let me just repeat this again. You believe in a talking snake! Haha. Seriously how stupid must you be to believe in a talking snake? Haha. You just admitted you believe in a talking snake. Wait, do you also believe that Noah was able to take every species of animal in an ark? Haha. Wow, your blog makes me lose 100 points of my IQ when I visit it.

"A worm turning into a person (Darwinism) now that's stupid."

I already explained to you that is not what evolution is. But you do not acknowledge it because you are a brainwashed deluded person. You do not want to acknowledge the correct form of evolution and just set up your own strawman because that is the only thing you have to argue against. You make no effort to really understand the theory, again because you are brainwashed. As I said above evolution does not say what you said, but you will continue saying this because you are a retard who is unable to think with a clear mind.

"Tell me what is the difference between atheist fairly tails and children bedtime stories?"

There are no atheist fairly tails. You cannot name one of them. Of course, you would say "apes giving birth to a person", since you like to create strawmen, because you are too much of a intellectual coward to argue against evolutionary theory the way it really stands.

jewish philosopher said...

The claim that atheism makes is that nothing turned into chemicals, chemicals turned into bacteria, bacteria into worms, worms into fish, fish into lizards, lizards into mice, mice into monkeys and monkeys into people, and all this happened just by itself, like magic. No religion is more laughable and ridiculous.

Secondly, atheism teaches that men are merely soulless bags of chemicals and shooting a man is not different than popping a balloon. Predictable, the most heinous criminals in history have been atheists.

I would say delusional, evil scum, not merely brainwashed and retarded.

But with your brain stuffed with cocaine and pornography, I know it's hard to think straight.

Anonymous said...

Baruch:

In "Mien Kampf" Hitlee seems to use the words "Creator" and "Nature" interchangibly. And in Chapter 11. vol 1 and chapter 4 Vol. 2, he made it clear that his core belief system was evolution. PLease don't mkae me cut and paste quotes. I wind up pasting entire paragraphs. And it was the Kaiser who started the practise of putting "Gott Mit Unse" on the Wermacht belt buckles. It was merely the continuation of a militayr tradition.

Now, I'd like to know how anyone who believes in the miracles of science like a univrse popping out of nothing, a universe that fine tunes itself to accomodate life, magic soup turning into bacteria, bacteria turning into blue whales, dark matter, dark energy, subatomic particles that can read your mind and communicate across space instantaniously can have problems with the miracles of the Torah. Krias Yam suf is nothing compared to multiverse.

Baruch Spinoza said...

"The claim that atheism makes is that nothing turned into chemicals, ...."

You are changing topics again. We were talking about evolution. You stop sticking to evolution and you start talking about other topics. Why? Because you are unable to think critically and skeptically so it is not a surprise why you cannot stick to one topic. Evolution has nothing to do with the origin of the universe, that is a separate question. Evolution has nothing to do with the origin of chemicals that is again in cosmology and in chemistry. Evolution has nothing to do with the origin of life, that is abiogenesis. Evolution is only the diversity of life. But you cannot stick to that discussion because you are a braindead brainwashed delusional religious retard.

Second of all atheists do not make those statements. No atheist says "nothing turned into chemiclas". That is a strawman you set up again. Are you capable of having a discussion without the use of strawmen? I doubt it. Your brain been ruined by religion, so you are helpless.

" No religion is more laughable and ridiculous. "

You are the one who believes in talking snakes. Haha. You are the one who believes that Noah was able to collect every species of animal from the planet. Haha. You are the one who believes that a man lived inside a whale for 3 days. Haha. You are seriously stupid if you believe in these fairly tales. However, I have good news, scientology is more laughable.

"Secondly, atheism teaches that men are merely soulless bags of chemicals and shooting a man is not different than popping a balloon. Predictable, the most heinous criminals in history have been atheists."

Do not change the discussion. Are you capable of doing that or are you too retarded to figure that out? What does morality have anything to do with who is correct? Even if atheists where the most immoral people it does not say anything about who is correct and who is not. Stick to the actual conversation.

No atheist believes that shooting a man is the same as popping a balloon. Only you, the religous brainwashed braindead deluded retard, believes in that. Again you set up your own strawman. You are just not able to argue the actual discussion, it is too hard for your retarded little brain. The atheist population in jail is actually the smallest precentage compared to all other groups. Look at the statistics.

" Predictable, the most heinous criminals in history have been atheists. "

Again that does not mean that atheists are wrong. You changing the discussion again. Other than that, what about the Catholic Church? What about its great evils that it has committed? And what about the Nazis? They were not atheists nor was Hitler. Again you avoid all the contrary evidence because you are a delusional religious retard.

Wait you did not answer my question. If you had an Amalekite baby in your hands would you kill it? I demand an answer to it.

"But with your brain stuffed with cocaine and pornography, I know it's hard to think straight."

I am capable of thinking straight. I have already demonstrated that in my replies to you. I like to fill my replies with insults but I am capable of thinking straight and making relevant points. You however are not able you. You just make up any strawman you want to because you are an intellectual coward to argue the actual discussion.

Yes, I do like porn. I watch all different kinds of porn. I like straight porn and I like gay porn and I like bisexual porn. And, what is the problem? Why is that so bad? Do not tell me you never watched any porn. I know you watched porn. And I know you masturbate or your masturbated when you were a kid. So you did the same I do. Porn does not interfere with your thinking. Answer this question: have you ever seen porn and have you ever masturbated?

No I never did cocaine, nor any drug nor even been drunk.

jewish philosopher said...

So you admit that atheism makes no sense and that atheists have no morality. Haha.

I think the original topic was evolution. Evolution is impossibly improbable and contradicts the fossil evidence. However your brain is too stuffed with drugs and pornography to realize it. Haha.

http://jewishphilosopher.blogspot.com/2008/03/evolution-science-hijacked-by-atheism.html

Judaism however is completely rational.

http://jewishphilosopher.blogspot.com/2006/12/truth-of-judaism.html

Haha.

Anonymous said...

BARUCH:

What is your basis for saying that killing a human is different than popping a balloon?

And according to study in the United Kingdom in 2000, there were very few people who identified themselves as atheists in prison. But then the number of people who described themselves as having no religion or belonging to no religion was 300% greater than their representation in the general population

And the worst mass murderers were atheists, a disproportionate number of mass murderers were atheists, and everytime atheists run a country, they commit mass murder. So the numbers are against you.

Now a lot of women claim that pornograph demeans them. That's one problem. Also, you don't get to meet many people when you masturbate to porngraphy.

Anonymous said...

Why is it whenever I ask atheists tp explain the origin of life, their response is to accuse me changing the subject and saying "that abiogenesis, not evolution?"Couldl it be they don't have an answer?

Anonymous said...

Here's more problems for evolution:

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19931456

Zuvan said...

On the topic of Modern Orthodox Jews, let's put aside theological and ideological arguments for a moment and consider the Modern Orthodox man above-pictured.

I noticed that he is clean shaven, and wearing a clearly visible but thin and discrete, snug-fitting yarmulke, popular among most Jews (the Modern Orthodox and non-Orthodox denominations). Well he is not exactly clean shaven as he has visible stubble, but at least he is groomed according to modern sensibilities. Contrast that with the stinky Jew beard worn by yourself and your fellow Haredim, the type that makes most ultra-Orthodox Jews look like a cross between Osama bin Laden and that crazy old homeless white guy on the corner (or at best, a ZZ Top reject). To his credit, should the Modern Orthodox Jew pictured above lose his freelance programming job for using his work e-mail to send harassing messages, his lack of a smelly mullah beard would make it easier to find a new job.

Not to mention his headwear is more fashionable than that thick floppy black kippah that looks like a condom stretched over your head. [OTOH, it makes perfect sense that you would wear a condom on your head considering that your head is frequently far up your own ass!]

jewish philosopher said...

Dear Mr Zuvan, your comments truly startle me.

First of, reading between the lines, I detect a hint of disrespect for My Holiness, something I would never expect from a fellow blogger.

Secondly, I would assume that a man of your high intellect would be concerned only with inner beauty, not superficial glitter.

Anonymous said...

Dear Jewish Philosopher:
I find it very admirable that you respond to every comment and engage in intellectual discussion. As an orthodox Jew, I can tell you that MO is a very difficult term to define- because it assumes that anyone considering themselves as such ascribes to every article published by Modern Orthodox organizations. I agree that believing in a non-believer and their intellectual philosophy is incredibly dangerous. I don't agree that everything coming out of the mouth of someone who is an agnostic and atheist is false.
Objectivity is not determined by the wielder of words, but by the objectivity itself. The world was flat...until it was round. Paradigm shifts are in constant flux, and to invalidate the philosophy of an individual based on their faith is a common philosophical fallacy. It is known as rejecting a notion based on the character of the person who presents it, not the content they present. We don't test the person who presents the hypothesis but the hypothesis itself.
As I am sure you know. Rambam originally posited that evolution occurs with a rat- it goes from a head and body of a rat encircled by dirt, to eventually evolving into a rat with legs. That notion was rejected when scientists discovered it was just- a dirty rat!!
Our contemporary Rabbanim strongly discourage following archaic medical advice of the Talmud, because medicine has evolved since then.
People can be wrong. People can be right. People can make absolutely no sense. What is unchanging is very elusive, because theories and paradigms of what is real in the world change all the time.
So when an individual of pure heart and search for authenticity engages in discussion of evolution, the intent is not to suport the agnostic, but to determine the plausibility of animals evolving.

Anonymous said...

There are levels of belief in evolution- many do not believe we come from apes who believe in evolution- rather evolution is purely for the animal species. In addition, i would say we have undergone a great deal of devolution- mental disabilities are commonplace and rampant in our society- there is no evidence that human seleciton of partners are determined to make 'superior' species, in fact many select very deleterious partners. Kayin upon losing his invulnerability to animals after murdering Hevel, devolves into an animal like creature and is killed by his grandson who mistakes him for an animal. Nevuchadnetzar after toying with the sovereignty that G-d granted him, spent several years isolated, extremely hairy and likened to a lion.
To say evolution cannot occur is to deny the ability of nature to change its course over years time. That is actually a claim that G-d is finite in His ability to allow natural selection to occur.
MO is merely a linguistic term thrown around bearing very little objective meaning- because people who define themselves as MO mean very different inconsistent things. MO sometimes means, I don't cover my hair. MO could mean, I read the sciences and secular studies in order to enhance my knowledge about the world and not merely Torah (which Rambam promotes and says metaphysics cannot be accomplished without developing a mastery on all the basic sciences). MO means women will come into the men's section of the synagogue during a circumcision and it is not a violation of the Torah because the Tefila/prayer has concluded the purpose for a mechitsah is to disrupt communication during our conversation with Hshm.
MO could mean sexual education to young men and women in our highschools so they are aware of the dangerous forms of physical contact they otherwise not know about in a chareidi circle. MO can mean the pediatrician explaining to a small minor the signs that someone is trying to sexually abuse them and how they can prevent it and call for help.
MO is quite often a response to modernity- not the embrace- but enlightening a community how to properly conduct themselves in the face of cultural and religion and societal distortions- it addresses the advanced technology and how it translates to permissive and prohibited act on the Shabbos - and why a lightbulb is or isn't fire-
MO enables us to not walk away with the tail between our legs when abusers of our Torah and our belief system come attacking us and we stand with no awareness of their philosophical stance- which disables it and makes it near impossible for us to argue on equal grounds. No, MO is not the rasha at our seder table asking why we perform the mitsvot- it is the opposite- it revitalizes the dynamism of the Torah and demonstrates why it is a living Torah, not archaic nor outdated- but very real and the very essence of who we are.
That being said, I think you heart is aimed in the right direction, but it is imperative to be more meticulous with your arguments. In addition, I do think posting articles may be on efficacious way of arguing your stance- however- write the arguments in your own words to demonstrate your knowledge and understanding of the proof you are citing so as not to allow people like Baruch Spinoza to continue on in his rants.

Anonymous said...

There are levels of belief in evolution- many do not believe we come from apes who believe in evolution- rather evolution is purely for the animal species. In addition, i would say we have undergone a great deal of devolution- mental disabilities are commonplace and rampant in our society- there is no evidence that human seleciton of partners are determined to make 'superior' species, in fact many select very deleterious partners. Kayin upon losing his invulnerability to animals after murdering Hevel, devolves into an animal like creature and is killed by his grandson who mistakes him for an animal. Nevuchadnetzar after toying with the sovereignty that G-d granted him, spent several years isolated, extremely hairy and likened to a lion.
To say evolution cannot occur is to deny the ability of nature to change its course over years time. That is actually a claim that G-d is finite in His ability to allow natural selection to occur.

Anonymous said...

MO is merely a linguistic term thrown around bearing very little objective meaning- because people who define themselves as MO mean very different inconsistent things. MO sometimes means, I don't cover my hair. MO could mean, I read the sciences and secular studies in order to enhance my knowledge about the world and not merely Torah (which Rambam promotes and says metaphysics cannot be accomplished without developing a mastery on all the basic sciences). MO means women will come into the men's section of the synagogue during a circumcision and it is not a violation of the Torah because the Tefila/prayer has concluded the purpose for a mechitsah is to disrupt communication during our conversation with Hshm.
MO could mean sexual education to young men and women in our highschools so they are aware of the dangerous forms of physical contact they otherwise not know about in a chareidi circle. MO can mean the pediatrician explaining to a small minor the signs that someone is trying to sexually abuse them and how they can prevent it and call for help.
MO is quite often a response to modernity- not the embrace- but enlightening a community how to properly conduct themselves in the face of cultural and religion and societal distortions- it addresses the advanced technology and how it translates to permissive and prohibited act on the Shabbos - and why a lightbulb is or isn't fire-
MO enables us to not walk away with the tail between our legs when abusers of our Torah and our belief system come attacking us and we stand with no awareness of their philosophical stance- which disables it and makes it near impossible for us to argue on equal grounds. No, MO is not the rasha at our seder table asking why we perform the mitsvot- it is the opposite- it revitalizes the dynamism of the Torah and demonstrates why it is a living Torah, not archaic nor outdated- but very real and the very essence of who we are.

Anonymous said...

That being said, I think you heart is aimed in the right direction, but it is imperative to be more meticulous with your arguments. In addition, I do think posting articles may be on efficacious way of arguing your stance- however- write the arguments in your own words to demonstrate your knowledge and understanding of the proof you are citing so as not to allow people like Baruch Spinoza to continue on in his rants.

Anonymous said...

Baruch-
I have a special words for you =)
‎באזני כסיל אל תדבר כי יבוז לשכל מליך אל תסג
In the ears of the fool do not speak, because he will despise any wisdom in your words and will not heed any truth in your words
(King solomon, mishley 23:9)
You are someone who scoffs, mocks, and derides anything that someone has to say that you don't agree with. It doesn't matter if there is any truth in their words- you will not only mock their words- you will insult them- This is a terrible trait- one that does not to pretend to have any common decency for the human being- you're a loose cannon who does not weight the consequences of your words- and for all we know- you are just doing this for fun and your own kick- it's surprisingly sad to find out this is the way you receive gratification in life-putting down others-
If your intention was just to get your point across you would have my blessing- but we all know that is not why you are here. Steer clear from hateful words and only argue with content- don't attack the person. If you feel the need to call someone braindead, it doesn't not testify to the weakness of your statement, but it sure gives you less credibility.
And as for fables- it is correct that a selective few rabbinic authorities for over a 1000 years argued that certain stories in the torah are purely a midrashik mora lessons and not to be taken literally- as we know the Torah is not suppose to be taken literally otherwise we are likened to Tzidukim-
however- read Paul Johnson's history of the Jews- no Paul is not Jewish- he is a devout christian who conducted an extensive historical story that proves the authenticity of much of the Torah- NOT through a Torah scroll- but recorded history in manuscripts, and writings dated before the reign of the Roman empire.
And finally- if you are not here to argue- but are here to mock- no one wants to listen to the words of a fool

JRKmommy said...

"I never saw a Conservative Jew who did not drive on Shabbat".

Well, you don't know all Conservative Jews. In right-wing traditional Conservative shuls (such as Shaar Shalom in Canada), it's not uncommon to find Jews who are shomer Shabbos and keep kosher, to the standards of the Conservative movement. [There are points where standards vary from Orthodox in these areas - they will use microphones on Shabbat, for example. There are also some minor kashruth differences, but since there is no separate Conservative kosher supervision in Canada the shuls keep to the standards of the main Orthodox supervision, but not any of the additional stringencies like CY].

JRKmommy said...

Re Modern Orthodox:

1. Your definition isn't the commonly accepted one, so there is no way of measuring how many people fit YOUR unique description. While Modern Orthodoxy includes philosophies like Torah u'Maddah (learning both Torah and general studies), it doesn't specifically embrace any particular non-Torah scientific teaching like evolution. It just doesn't declare that studying fossils in forbidden.

2. While many who are MO also happen to be Dati Leumi (religious Zionist), the two groups are not identical.

3. There is nothing remotely atheistic about the Dati Leumi movement. To the contrary - since much of the secular worldview criticizes Israel, it would be far easier to blend in by avoiding Israel instead of pitching a tent on a hilltop. Rav Kook had a very specific philosophy about the role of Zionism - it is not universally accepted, but it is not remotely secular.

jewish philosopher said...

Conservative rabbis permit driving to a synagogue on the sabbath.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Conservative_Halakha#Shabbat

Modern orthodox rabbis endorse Zionism

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Modern_Orthodox_Judaism#Religious_Zionism

And most modern orthodox accept evolution.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Theistic_evolution#Judaism

In contrast, the ultra-orthodox oppose both.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Haredi_Judaism#Israel:_tensions_between_Haredim.2C_secular_Jews.2C_and_Zionism

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jewish_views_on_evolution#Jewish_opposition_to_Darwinian_theory

Zionism is a basically atheistic movement in the sense that most Zionists and Zionist leaders up until the 1960s were atheists.  The atheists have since mostly left Zionism, while the orthodox who emulated them are still foolishly hanging on to a dead movement.

Anonymous said...

correct, most MO's accept zionism and evolution
You know who also accepts evolution?
Rav Tzvi Yehuda Kook: Do you know who Rav Kook is quoting about this acceptance? The Arizal: Do you know who the Arizal is explaining when he declares the imperative to agree to evolution? The ZOHAR- are you really, seriously, going to go head to head with sources such as these?

jewish philosopher said...

So? Christians use Isaiah and Daniel as sources for their religion. But those are bogus reinterpretations.

Michael Nadata said...

I actually think that using wikipedia in order to demonstrate proofs is a pretty weak tool. Try using more professional and well researched sources, MO.

jewish philosopher said...

I usually use Wikipedia because it is publicly available (unlike let's say Encyclopedia Britannica) and it tends to have a secular bias so no one can claim I'm using sources with a religious bias (like let's say convervapedia).