The challenge of faith

R' Darmoni of Yeshivat Netiv Aryeh in the Old City (of Jerusalem) told me once that the major challenge of existence in the desert, after the reception of the Torah, was faith. They had food, they had water, they had shelter, clothing, everything one could ask for, and just the fear that perhaps their needs wouldn't be met the next day was enough to send them into rebellion. The fear that God might suddenly abandon us tomorrow, the simple uncertainty and innate blindness of the future is too much to bear. Over time I've observed that this challenge is still the most thoroughly overwhelming to this day. In the Talmud, one of the three questions we are asked when we come to be judged after death is: "did you perform your business endeavours with [appropriate] emunah (translation: faith)?" Every moment of our lives we can be ruled by doubt, plagued by fear, or we can [do our best to act according to the strictures of the Torah, and] trust in God to protect us accordingly.

Stephen W. Hawking wants us to colonize space
My question: SciFi was obsessed with this back @ the beginning of the cold war. Frank Herbert ended the Dune Chronicles with that (preservation of the species) being the ultimate human endeavor. (oops spoiler if you never read it--but anyways it has little to do with the plot or goings-on of the actual series)
Sounds like Hawking is getting older, he used to sound young and flippant, now he's concerned about the future generations.

Not that it's a bad thing, worrying about the future, but it sounds like he doesn't trust science or human nature to keep us safe, why would space be any less dangerous or less harsh? The talmud talks about all the fears one has as a result of lacking fear in G-d. I'm not saying it's time to give up rationality and stick our heads in the sand--only perhaps true believers have stress-free lives.


Related posts

Blog Widget by LinkWithin