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|abcdefghijklmnop||Posted - 08 October 2007 14:57
I come from a family where most of the people in it are non orthodox. I consider myself to be orthodox since I keep shabbos, holidays, kosher, etc. However, I don't do many other things. When I am at home or in my summerhouse, I wear pants and t-shirts. I wear tznius clothes when I'm outside in my neighborhood, but I feel that I do that only because I am pressured to. When I am at home or at my summerhouse, I wear whatever I please. I recently changed from wearing tanktops and miniskirts to t-shirts and pants, but that is a different story. Maybe in the olden days, wearing a skirt and long sleeved kida baggy shirts was considered modest. But now, things changed. I don't think you should wear WHATEVER you want, but a t-shirt and long pants is seriously considered modest now adays. I talk to boys and I talk to girls. I have guy friends and girl friends. I've never had a boyfriend, but if I had an oppurtunity to have a relationship with a guy I liked, I would take it. But I'd never do certain things with him. I may kiss him, but I'd never go further. I seriously don't think that talking to a guy or even kissing him is an aveira as long as it doesn't lead to anything else. Of course, it CAN lead to something else and that would be an aveira, but if it doesn't, I don't believe that that is an aveira. I listed to non jewish music...I guess i shouldn't listen to some of it that can lead to an aveira...but in general I liike non jewish music. I seriously find jewish music extremely corny. Plus, I don't listen to what most people listen to. For example, my favorite band is the beatles. Pretty wierd, I know. But I just love their music. I don't think just LISTENING to the music and not acting on it is an aveira. Plus I'm not ENTIRELLY sure judiasm is the correct religion. I'm like...90 percent sure...I'll get there.
So can someone please answer me? I please don't say 'just try to be good jew' or 'labels don't count'. I just want an answer.
Thanks a lot. :)
|cheers!||Posted - 08 October 2007 20:36
what's ur question? u want a label? u wanna know what's ok or not ok to do? i'm not sure what ur asking here...
|abcdefghijklmnop||Posted - 08 October 2007 22:02
Ya, a label is what I'm looking for I guess.
|taon||Posted - 09 October 2007 0:25
The the only thing to label you as is a religious Jew. You are either an apikores, not yet religious, or religious. the last includes people who are not yet fully religious, but are trying to become that way, instead of staying where you are and declaring that good enough, your own religion. So call yourself Orthodox, Ultra-Orthodox, Charedi, Baal Teshuvah, trying, whatever. If your ultimate goal is to be shomer Torah and Mitzvos fully, you are a religious Jew. No one's perfect, everyone's trying, just at different stages and amounts. working at yourself and wanting to do the right thing whether you are far from it or nearly there doesn't have it's own label. If it did, though, the label would be called human.
|abcdefghijklmnop||Posted - 09 October 2007 1:42
That kind of makes sense but I disagree on some things in Judiasm, so I'm not really going to go forward on that (eg. boys, music). So does what you just said still true?
|depressedAngel||Posted - 09 October 2007 13:31
abc, dont you think its hypocritical to agree with somethings in the Torah and not others? the same G-d who commanded you to keep shabbat (which you said you observed) commanded you to be tzniut which is not just your subjective opinion of modesty. after all, if that was the case, what if i think a mini skirt and tank top is modest? how can you argue with my opinion? the question is do you believe in the Torah? if you do then you can't pick and choose if you don't or don't neccessarily yet then research and you can do that right on thsi sight probbly checking out the G-d and basoc judaism forums
|swim-like-a-fish||Posted - 09 October 2007 13:31
what do you mean you dont believe in everything related to judaism? do you only believe in things that you want to do? in Judaism, we cant pick and choose which mitzvos we like and dont like. they're all in the Torah for a reason.
the Torah is the manual for the world. Hashem created this vast, beautiful world and everything in it. look at one tiny bit of creation--humans, animals, nature, whatever, and you cant help but recognize G-d. do you think He would create the world and not include instructions of how to 'run' it? how can the world remain the beautiful place it is if man doesnt know how to care for it? so He did give us the instruction manual: the Torah.
because we are not the masters of the world, we dont understand all the directions written. but we will when we see the 'finished product', if you will, in olam habaa.
certain mitzvos are harder to do than others and certain people find some mitzvos harder to keep than other people. the yetzer hara tries to trick us, constantly, that some mitzvos are not really to our benefit and we dont need to do them if we dont agree with them. wrong. all mitzvos written in the Torah are MANDATORY and our job is to try our hardest to do them all as best as we are able.
if you dont 'agree' with a mitzvah, try to find out more about it so you'll understand it better and know the reasons for it. for example, you dont think kissing a guy is wrong as long as you dont do anything else. well, the Torah prohibits any relationship with the opposite sex prior to marriage b/c Hashem knows human nature only too well. no relationship will end after a kiss. who are you kidding? after all, Hashem created humans, so dont you think He knows human tendencies better than anyone? there are several other reasons why not to be in any sort of contact with guys...check other forums out here, for one. its discussed many times.
|taon||Posted - 09 October 2007 13:31
Why do you 'disagree'? if you have questions or problems, you can just ask. Don't toss it away, please.
|abcdefghijklmnop||Posted - 09 October 2007 21:57
I'm not picking and choosing things from the Torah. I think that since we are in gulus and Hashem can't talk to us anymore through niviim, maybe some mitzvos have changed a little during the years.
For example, we have to dress more modestly than goyim. A long time ago, a non jew would not even THINK of going outside with a tanktop and minskirt on. They dressed more modestly than goyim do now. We have to dress more modestly, correct? Then we dressed with baggy shirts and long skirts. But nowadays, goyim wear even more open clothing. If we wear clothes that are more modest than theirs, aren't we still keeping the mitzvah?
Second, the Torah never actually says that you cannot have ANY relationship with guys. It says that you cannot sleep with them, etc. If I KNOW that I will not go further than kissing and I kiss a boy, is that really an aveira? I understand that this could lead to other things but I am just simply not the person to do anything else before I am married. So how is this an aveira?
Again, I'm not trying to say that some things are wrong in the Torah and some things are right. I just think that they mitzvos may have changed a little over time. Hashem would have told us, you could say. But we are in gulus! If the mitzvos changed in any sort of way, we would have no way of getting the information from Hashem!
(Plus, I'm probably wrong about this so that's why I put this one in parenthesis: some mitzvos have been actually deleted since we were in gulus like sacrifices. But we daven, you could say. So isn't that like changing the mitzvah??? So if you say that people should go strictly according to Torah, then we should be making sacrifices! And if you make some excuse for that, then I guess some mitzvos DO change, so then other mitzvos, such as tznius, can change as well!)
Please answer, I never really got any answers to these questions before.
|cheers!||Posted - 09 October 2007 21:57
taon, i couldn't have put it any better. bravo!
abc--whether or not u keep every single mitzva perfectly doesn't determine whether or not taon's words hold true. i'm a religious jew but i still make mistakes and do all sorts of avairos. it's called the yetzer hora. sometimes he comes by tripping us in areas where we know we're wrong but can't resist the temptation. other times he comes with a different approach and convinces us that certain things we may be tempted to do are really perfectly fine.
that's called stumbling. that's called having a yetzer hora. that's called being noraml normal. that's called real life. and as taon said, it's called being human.
|swim-like-a-fish||Posted - 09 October 2007 23:45
no mitzvos do NOT change. and just because the goyim change their standards drastically, unfortunately, that does NOT mean we can or should!! thats what makes us different and special!! for thousands of years, the Jews have kept the one and only Torah given to us by our one and only G-d and it does not change, no matter what the goyim are doing. we dont base the importance of our holy mitzvos on their absurdely low standards. being tznius does not mean dressing more modestly than the goyim. it means dressing, acting, speaking, behaving, etc. in a modest way. that has not changed. the secular world no longer has a concept of what this means. but we should never ever think that we can lower our standards because of them. once upon a time the Jews did that and thats WHY we are in galus.
thats the whole nisayon of being in galus!! not conforming to the society that calls us old fashioned, or shows us how the mitzvos dont apply anymore. chas v'shalom! now than ever its important to stick to our guns and keep the Torah to the best of our ability.
its a mitzvah to listen to our gedolim and chachamim, as they will help us interpret what the Torah wants from us during galus. so yes, some halachos may have been altered over the years. but its not our place to decide which halachos arent applicable anymore. our gedolim tell us what to do and by following their guidance, we will hopefully do the right thing. davening instead of karbanos does not change the mitzvah; the essence and reasons are the same: to come close to Hashem. unfortunately, we dont have the bais hamikdash anymore so we cant bring sacrifices, but davening is the next best thing. and our gedolim said so, so we know its true. dont confuse it with changing mitzvos though.
it DOES say in the Torah not to have realtionships of any kind with the opposite sex. i dont know exactly where, i'll look it up, or mod can you help us out...? and by saying " i know i wont don anything" is falling flat faced into the trap of the yetzer hara. just because you think you know yourself doesnt mean you arent doing an avairah. you are doing an aveirah just by not following the Torah. this is discussed here several times...go to the platonic relationship forum and just read...you'll get plenty of reasons.
|depressedAngel||Posted - 09 October 2007 23:45
abc, ok first of all the commandment to be tzenua is not to be more tznius than the goyim. there are specific requirement where we must cover what is considered erva and our sages have informed us what erva is. whatever gave you the idea that the idea is just to be more tznius than the goyim? so if the goyim one day start walking around in their underwear than it would be ok for us to wear tank tops and mini skirts because we are being more modest than them? and there is an issur to having a relationship with a guy and not just a physical one. the issur is not just to sleep with him and therefore even if it does not lead to that it is completely assur. also, about your whole thing of maybe now that we're in golus G-d wanted to change some mitzvos but he has no way to tell us. ok there a bunch of problems with that assumption. first of all, one of the 13 principles of faith is to believe that the Torah will never change. There are tons of different places in the Torah where it says if someone tells you that the Torah changes do not believe him because the Torah will never change. in addition since G-d obviously knows the future wouldnt he forsee this problem and write somewhere in the Torah that the mitzvos may change? otherwise what are we supposed to do? how do we know which mitzvos to change and what not to change? is it just a geusing game? and G-d is G-d, if He needed so send us a message he could figure out a way- he wouldnt just leave us floundering on our own. in addition G-d commanded us in the Torah to follow our chchamim and since they are not saying what you are, obviously we shouldnt be either. sorry i know this was a bit ramblish but i hope it was clear
|taon||Posted - 10 October 2007 1:28
<< I think that since we are in gulus and Hashem can't talk to us anymore through niviim, maybe some mitzvos have changed a little during the years.>>
They haven't. Hashem says the Torah is an eternal covenant, that it will never change. If it did change, why would we be forbidden to detract from the Mitzvos? Hashem knows the future, He's outside of time. If Hashem saw changes were necessary after the giving of the Torah (Even niviim are prohibited from removing from the Torah. They could only add Mitzvos Dirabbanan and gezeiros.) Hashem would have planned for it ahead of time, instead of having us decide on our own what seems right for when against what it says straight out in the Torah. Any changes in the about 3000 years since matan Torah were dealt with by the Gedolei Hador. And they didin't subtract anything, they couldn't. The Torah is perfect. It was written by Hashem, how could we even know if a Mitzvah doesnt apply, we dont know the infinite amount of reasons for it? They added gezeiros to make sure everything stays in check no matter what arises. They also have multiple reasonings behind them, and it says in the Torah we have to follow Mitzvos Direbanan fully, just like with Mitzvos from the Torah, with a few technical differences. This is explained elsewhere.
<<For example, we have to dress more modestly than goyim.>>
<< But we are in gulus! If the mitzvos changed in any sort of way, we would have no way of getting the information from Hashem!>>
<<(Plus, I'm probably wrong about this so that's why I put this one in parenthesis: some mitzvos have been actually deleted since we were in gulus like sacrifices. But we daven, you could say. >>
<<So if you say that people should go strictly according to Torah, then we should be making sacrifices!>>
Anything else? ANything not answered to anyones satisfaction by any of the repliers (Kol Hakavod to everyone)?
|abcdefghijklmnop||Posted - 10 October 2007 3:37
Thanks everybody! That really helped. The Torah is just so strict! I don't see how it's humanly possible to keep even most of those laws!
I'll probably continue to do most of the things I did (while fighting it, of course), but this has definitly changed my outlook on Judiasm. It's actually starting to make sense to me. :)
|swim-like-a-fish||Posted - 10 October 2007 3:37
well said taon...as usual:)
|Bas-Levi||Posted - 10 October 2007 3:37
Extremely well-put, everyone!
Great answers. =)
I was actually wondering about a few of the topics that abc brought up, and your excellent responses fully answered my questions.
abc, I'm not going to repeat everything that everyone else has said, but I just want to make the point that the Torah is perfect, and that it is from Hashem, who is perfect. It is impossible to improve something that is perfect. We serve Hashem the way we are commanded to (to the best of our abilities in these times), and its not for us to decide if we think a particular mitzvah does not apply anymore.
"Live each day as if its on purpose."
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