Anything about JUDAISM
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qwert Posted - 06 October 2000 3:10
Everyone tells us that we have full bechira, but do we really? First off why is hashem giving us choices in which we cant see the full picture so we dont always understand the choice. like if someone were to buy me two presents and they put each one wrapped up so i picked the bigger one cuz bigger always seems better but really it ended up that the smaller thing was what i always wanted, but too late i already opened it. and also who said i chose to be a jew? t be born into my family? when was tis? i dont remember ne of it. beinga jew is so much harder than being a goy, all i hava do id keep sheva mitzvos bnei noach which r quite logical and im a clean man, not like a jew that opening my eye there are liek 80 things prob wrong with that. so who said i have a choice?
MODERATOR Posted - 10 October 2000 22:38
Bechirah means not only the ability to do the right thing over the wrong thing, but the ability to choose right because it is right.

If we would be able to see the full picture, a cheeseburger would look like some kind of poison which if oyu eat will cause you excrutiating pain, stolen money would look white hot such that if you touch it it will incinerate your hand, and a Mitzvah would look more desirable than a ten million dollar bill.

The choice between doing a mitzvah or an Aveirah would be the same as The Lady Or The Tiger, but you would know behind which door lurks the tiger.

Not much of a choice.

So if you would have the real picture, you would then really not have Bechirah, because although oyu would have the ability to choose, only an idiot would choose scorching fire over eternal pleasure.

In such a case, your choosing the Mitzvah would not show that you are willing to choose right over wrong, but only that you would rather choose pleasure over pain.

Evil people would choose right over wrong in equal measure with righteous people.

You would not get any credit for choosing the Mitzvah that way.

That's not the type of Bechirah Hashem wanted us to have.

Bechirah means the ability to choose right from wrong because it is right. Because you care about choosing right. because you value what's right.

So what Hashem did was to give you the two options, the lady and the tiger, and you know which is which, but in order to ensure that you choose the lady because of what she is rather than for obvious reasons, Hashem makes the tiger not so scary and the lady not so appealing.

At least not in this world.

It's to balance your Bechirah to make sure you choose right from wrong, not pleasure from pain.

It's like the story of a guy, Frank we'll call him, who meets a girl online, and, after a number of emails and IM's he is impressed with her personality and the finally decide to meet, the next day, in Penn Station. "How will I know who you are?" he asked.

"I'll be wearing a white rose," she said.

Well, the guy arrived, he looked around, and there was an elderly, diminutive lady, with white hair, wearing a white rose. He sighed, he put his chin up, he walked over, smiled and said: "Hi. I'm Frank. May I take you to dinner?"

As he looked at her, she said: "Young man. I don't exactly know what this is all about. But I was told that if you came up and asked me to dinner that I should point you over to that lady over yonder."

And there was the most bedazzling girl-of-his-dreams, who became his blushing bride and the mother of his children.

Similarly Hashem hides the "real picture" because wants to make sure we choose the Mitzvos for the right reasons. So he makes Mitzvos appear in this world not the way they really are.

But whereas Frank believed that his girl was old and undesirable, Hashem, in His benevolence, allows us to know, intellectually, that the Mitzvah is most dazzling piece of beauty that we can imagine.

Edited by - admindealing on 10/11/2000 5:06:13 PM

Me Posted - 10 October 2000 22:50
qwert we are only given nisyonos we can handle which means you were born to be a jew b/c that's what your neshama wants and yearns for and you'll be able to be a great jew if you try your hardest and you know life's tough s/t and we just got to learn and grow from that and not sink lower.
MODERATOR Posted - 10 October 2000 23:07
Re: Being Jewish

Any situation you find yourself in not by your own choice was created by Hashem, and given to you because it is the best possible sitation for you.

Not necessarily the least painful or the most fun today, but definitely the best for you in the long run. In other words, if you would understand everything about it, you, too, would have chosen what Hashem gave you. it's just that you can't see the whole picture, since you're not Hashem, that it looks less than the best.

The reason it pays to be a Jew even though there are many more responsibilities is asked by the meforshim on the Chazal that says "Hashem wanted to give His people more reward so He gave them many Mitzvos". they ask, yes, more reward, but also more potential for punishment. So why is more responsibilities, more Torah and Mitzvos, a good thing?

(You ask good questions, qwert)

The Shem MiShmuel (Bamidbar, Shavuos) explains that the question is based on a fallacy.

The question assumes that the measure of reward for a Mitzvah and the punishment for an Aveirah are proportionate. That is a not so. The reward for fulfilling a Mitzvah is so great, much greater than the punishmant for doing an Aveirah, such that it is worth even going through the punishment of many Aveiros to get it. So therefore, it is better for us if we have more responsibilities, i.e. more Mitzvos, because even if it means we have more chance to slip up, as long as we have more opportunities to do Mitzvos, we are very very ahead of the game.

But that is only regarding the multitude of Mitzvos we have as a Jew. If the quetion is why be a Jew as opposed to a goy, the answer is simply, that through the seven Mitzvos you don't get Olam Habbah, you don't connect to Hashem. Although non-Jews do get rewarded for their Mitzvos, their reward is in a totally different league than the ultimate, eternal, unending, beyond-imagining reward of the Jew.

Remember, to connect to hashem, to share the Perfect Pleasure that he has, there is no way except through fulfilling the Torah. (Please see the "Basic Judaism" forum for details.)

Renée Posted - 11 October 2000 20:13
Out of curiosity, what reward do the goyim get for obeying the Noachide laws?
MODERATOR Posted - 11 October 2000 21:08
They get reward after they die, some type of Olam Habah, though not like Jews. And there are those who say that they receive some subservient role after Moshiach comes.
qwert Posted - 13 October 2000 19:20
i understand what ur saying about choice how we dont really chose if we know everything, but y does hashem want us to chose. he can look down at the world so much happier seeing ppl doing the right thing because they know and see whats right and then of course there are those ppl that can know the truh nd still rebel. so let the rebels rebel cuz thats what they want and let the ppl that try but cant fully c everything fully c everything, and if they wanna do the right thiing theyre doing it witj a full heart. and some ppl see more of the picture than others, like whoever is answering my stupid questions understands 80 times more than i do, how come hashem made me ask questions and not give answers?
MODERATOR Posted - 23 October 2000 23:14
Doing Mitzvos are not only for Hashem ot see what we will do. You are correct - that he knows already. Rather, they are for US to become holy through doing them. Each Mitzvah effects us in a positive way.

Hashem made everybody according to the way he saw fit, according to the best way possible for that person. Our job in this world is to become Tzadikim. Period. If we become Tzadikim who ask question, or give answeres, or a little of both, or neither, that's up to Hashem. But all ofthe above can become equally great, meaning, equally righteous.

eh19 Posted - 23 May 2002 21:32
I find it really interesting that people have issues with bechira...i mean if it was opposite, and we didnt have bechira, people would still have issues and constantly say.."yknow if i had a choice then..." Just something interesting to point out!
green Posted - 24 May 2002 20:24
i don't think so- you can't imagine a concept that doesn't exist.we wouldn't even know that there was an idea that a person could make a choice.
yideleh Posted - 24 May 2002 21:09
Just a question I was thinking about: If we really do have bechirah, then how come we didn't have bechirah (the ability to make the choice) to be in our present situation? (I mean, to be born and have to go thru life to begin with?)
MODERATOR Posted - 24 May 2002 21:37
because you only have Bechirah to choose Mitzvos and aveiros. All other choices you make - i.e. any that are irrlevant to the Torah - are not made through Bechirah, but rather are determined by hashem.

Your being born is not a "right or wrong" decision on your part and therefore not in the realm of your bechirah. Rather, Hashem does what is best for you. If He decides its best for you to be born, you will be. If not, not.

yideleh Posted - 28 May 2002 7:08
If you only have bechira when it comes to mitzvos and aveiros, then how does the rest of life's choices work? If I decided to wear my hair in a pony, or to let it loose, I didn't excercize my bechira?
MODERATOR Posted - 28 May 2002 7:55
Right. If there is no Tznius issue invovled in that decision, ofr instance, its nto your Bechirah but Hashem putting that decision into your head.
Taryag Posted - 29 May 2002 9:09
For such an example, how can the answer be so clear cut? There are those that hold that all hair must be tied back, regardless of the length, while others let even long hair down, as long as it isn't too seducive. With all the different shitos, how can it be bechira for one person and yad Hashem in the other?
ponder2 Posted - 29 May 2002 23:09
what about doing hishtadlus for s/t...Hashem also puts the ideas of what to do in ur head? that's not nessessarily right or wrong either.
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