Rav Kook, or Why Some Jews Don't Hate Us As Much
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08-04-2016, 03:52 PM
RE: Rav Kook, or Why Some Jews Don't Hate Us As Much
(07-04-2016 05:42 AM)julep Wrote:  Well, I'm annoyed by Kook's condescension towards atheists. I am never in the mood for a theist to pat me on the head and assure me that I'm valuable because I'm doing god's work. Let their god do its own work.

I'd like to say I'm astounded by the arrogance of the claim that his god concept will be the last one standing, but that is also typical of theists.

I think that it is useful to poke holes in god concepts, yes. Disagree vehemently that after all the holes are poked there will be a viable god concept left.
I agree, my family all talk about being about God's work. Why doesn't he do his own work? If he has time is he gonna help me with my work?
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08-04-2016, 03:57 PM
RE: Rav Kook, or Why Some Jews Don't Hate Us As Much
(08-04-2016 03:52 PM)DerFish Wrote:  I agree, my family all talk about being about God's work. Why doesn't he do his own work? If he has time is he gonna help me with my work?

Doing what? Driving you to the beach??? Blink

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08-04-2016, 04:05 PM
RE: Rav Kook, or Why Some Jews Don't Hate Us As Much
(08-04-2016 03:42 PM)Banjo Wrote:  
(08-04-2016 03:41 PM)Aliza Wrote:  I dunno... What's wrong with a group of people saying, "Hey! We want to be friends. You help us achieve our goals, and we (think we) help you achieve at least part of yours!"

The other groups of people want to fight you, hate you, and even murder you. Pick and choose your battles. Yes

Bigotry is bigotry. Violent or not.

"Hey, I don't have a problem with you, and really, you're helping me achieve world peace."

Maybe I missed something, but I don't see what's wrong with that. I think it's a good thing. I think every effort to find positive attributes in others -when you could go out of your way to find negative attributes- is a really wonderful way to relate to your fellow humans.

I don't get it.
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08-04-2016, 04:09 PM
Rav Kook, or Why Some Jews Don't Hate Us As Much
To me, it's not just that he was at least civil to atheists. Now that I've shed most of religious leaning, it feels more like argument from incredulity. That goes for Kook, Abu Hanifa, CotW, or anyone that "just can't believe that a person doesn't believe."
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08-04-2016, 04:13 PM
RE: Rav Kook, or Why Some Jews Don't Hate Us As Much
(08-04-2016 04:09 PM)Clockwork Wrote:  To me, it's not just that he was at least civil to atheists. Now that I've shed most of religious leaning, it feels more like argument from incredulity. That goes for Kook, Abu Hanifa, CotW, or anyone that "just can't believe that a person doesn't believe."

Therein lies a question. What is the Jewish concept of G-d?
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08-04-2016, 04:36 PM
RE: Rav Kook, or Why Some Jews Don't Hate Us As Much
(08-04-2016 04:13 PM)Aliza Wrote:  
(08-04-2016 04:09 PM)Clockwork Wrote:  To me, it's not just that he was at least civil to atheists. Now that I've shed most of religious leaning, it feels more like argument from incredulity. That goes for Kook, Abu Hanifa, CotW, or anyone that "just can't believe that a person doesn't believe."

Therein lies a question. What is the Jewish concept of G-d?

A guy who looks the other way during the Holocaust?

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08-04-2016, 05:58 PM
RE: Rav Kook, or Why Some Jews Don't Hate Us As Much
(08-04-2016 04:36 PM)Banjo Wrote:  
(08-04-2016 04:13 PM)Aliza Wrote:  Therein lies a question. What is the Jewish concept of G-d?

A guy who looks the other way during the Holocaust?

Rav Kook sounds like he’s speaking to a Jewish audience here; an audience who understands the Jewish concept of G-d and appreciates that we view G-d as being everyone and everything in the universe simultaneously. Jesus and this idea of a guy who floats in the sky and smites people limits that view, and is therefore idolatry. Atheists have freed themselves of this Christian view.

I’m not going to defend this definition of G-d. I’m explaining that Rav Kook is speaking -not to you- but to people who do have this understanding.

If he was speaking directly to you, knowing that your definition of G-d is vastly different than ours, and he was telling you directly that you believe something that you know you don’t believe, then okay. That would be rude. But he’s not telling you what you believe. He’s speaking to other Jews who understand monotheism differently than you do. He’s saying, “Hey look guys. These atheists have the same goal that we have. They want intellectualism and the freedom of not being bogged down by a religion that limits and controls them. We don’t have to fear this. We can respect it and view it as a friendly force.”
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08-04-2016, 08:09 PM
RE: Rav Kook, or Why Some Jews Don't Hate Us As Much
(08-04-2016 05:58 PM)Aliza Wrote:  
(08-04-2016 04:36 PM)Banjo Wrote:  A guy who looks the other way during the Holocaust?

Rav Kook sounds like he’s speaking to a Jewish audience here; an audience who understands the Jewish concept of G-d and appreciates that we view G-d as being everyone and everything in the universe simultaneously. Jesus and this idea of a guy who floats in the sky and smites people limits that view, and is therefore idolatry. Atheists have freed themselves of this Christian view.

I’m not going to defend this definition of G-d. I’m explaining that Rav Kook is speaking -not to you- but to people who do have this understanding.

If he was speaking directly to you, knowing that your definition of G-d is vastly different than ours, and he was telling you directly that you believe something that you know you don’t believe, then okay. That would be rude. But he’s not telling you what you believe. He’s speaking to other Jews who understand monotheism differently than you do. He’s saying, “Hey look guys. These atheists have the same goal that we have. They want intellectualism and the freedom of not being bogged down by a religion that limits and controls them. We don’t have to fear this. We can respect it and view it as a friendly force.”

I'm changing my stance. I was mulling it over and the question popped into my mind: why would Rav Kook care what atheist gentiles think? I don’t think he’s referring to Gentiles leaving Christianity at all. I think he’s referring only to secular/atheist Jews.

In the late 1800’s, Jews started adopting secular lifestyles –my own family included. This was an era when Jews were integrating with mainstream society and shedding the religious mysticism (kabbalah) of our ancestors. Jews established a secular/atheist "synagogue" in New York called the Ethical Cultural Society and we even made a private Jewish-atheist school in New York called The Ethical Culture School where Robert Oppenheimer, among , many notable others, were educated. Here in the US, families like the Oppenheimers, the Goldmans, the Sachs and many other German Jews were heavily promoting atheism/secularism at this time and trying to sell disenchanted Russian Jewish immigrants on the concept. In Palestine tons of secular Jews fled Russia and took up the task of cultivating the land. Kook dedicated his career to trying to bridge the gap between strictly observant Jews and secular Jews and rationalized that both ways of thinking had their place in Jewish society, and that secular Jews were playing a part in reestablishing the land and bringing about the messianic era.

“[Rav Kook] was a master of [Jewish law] in the strictest sense, while at the same time possessing an unusual openness to new ideas.”

Everything that I’ve read about Kook thus far suggests that he was addressing concerns that his fellow Russian Jews had about secularism/atheism influencing Jews. This has nothing to do with gentile atheists. Rav Kook made statements from 1904 to his death in 1935 that promoted tolerance of Jewish secularists. -And I think his words stuck because +80 years later, Judaism boasts a hugely secular community, has no problem with atheism, and has a secular/a-religious/non-theist Jewish population that outnumber religious Jews by a significant margin.
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08-04-2016, 11:23 PM
RE: Rav Kook, or Why Some Jews Don't Hate Us As Much
(08-04-2016 04:05 PM)Aliza Wrote:  
(08-04-2016 03:42 PM)Banjo Wrote:  Bigotry is bigotry. Violent or not.

"Hey, I don't have a problem with you, and really, you're helping me achieve world peace."

Maybe I missed something, but I don't see what's wrong with that. I think it's a good thing. I think every effort to find positive attributes in others -when you could go out of your way to find negative attributes- is a really wonderful way to relate to your fellow humans.

I don't get it.
Because he is doing what many theists do and being a condescending asshole pretending to know what atheists really mean and are really doing?

When atheists say that we do not believe the god claims made by other more credulous people, or when we deny the existence of a god...that is what we are doing. What we are NOT doing is...the total opposite of that.

There are ONLY man made concepts of god cause gods are man made concepts. Which is why they continually fail as a hypothesis, they have no explantitive power and no predictive power. When we, atheists, continue to demonstrate how colossal a failure the idea of monotheism is and has always been, for some guy to turn around and say we don't actually deny god and we are in fact serving monotheism that man is both a liar and an asshole and no different from any other christian doing similar.

I hate to be the bearer of bad news to the poor rabbi but one of the things we have "burned away" is Judaism, so he better start looking of a new job. If any man-made image of god is just an idol why is he a rabbi and pedaling that exact thing? What methodology does he have for telling one from the other?


Lastly he said we are serving "true monotheism" not world peace and they are not in ANYWAY the same thing. Any world peace that involves hacking of pieces of babies is not fit for any world of peace.

When valour preys on reason, it eats the sword it fights with.
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08-04-2016, 11:38 PM
RE: Rav Kook, or Why Some Jews Don't Hate Us As Much
(08-04-2016 11:23 PM)WhiskeyDebates Wrote:  I hate to be the bearer of bad news to the poor rabbi but one of the things we have "burned away" is Judaism, so he better start looking of a new job.

The poor rabbi is six feet under old bean. His job description is "pushing up the daisies".

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If you're perfect -- Alanis Morissette
(06-02-2014 03:47 PM)Momsurroundedbyboys Wrote:  And I'm giving myself a conclusion again from all the facepalming.
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