What's Wrong With Judaism? ­ Article ­ BINA

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What's Wrong With Judaism?

What's Wrong With Judaism?

by Rabbi Aron Moss

Question:

The festival of Shavuos is to me an example of everything that's wrong with Judaism. On the one hand it is the time of the giving of the Torah - supposedly a holy and spiritual event. So how do Jews celebrate this sacred revelation? By eating cheese blintzes. Do you see why I am attracted to eastern spirituality? They don't just eat at every opportunity. ..

Answer:

A great thinker once said: "Show me how you eat blintzes, and I will show you your soul." Or something like that.

Eating blintzes on Shavuos expresses the core message of Judaism. And there is no better way to celebrate a sacred moment than by eating the most indulgent and pleasurable dessert.

We learn this from a strange detail in the story of this great divine revelation. The entire Israelite nation, men, women and children, were gathered at the foot of Mt Sinai, ready to experience the greatest spiritual event of history. For the first and only time, G-d spoke directly to an entire nation and delivered His mission for the world. A thundering voice proclaimed the Ten Commandments, and the people heard and were awe-struck.

Then, once the show was over, G-d instructed the Jewish people, "Now go back to your tents."

This seems bizarre. Surely the Israelites didn't need to be told to go home. Where else would they go? So why did G-d need to say this? Can you imagine an opera singer ending a powerful performance, or a president ending an address to the nation with, "Ok, you can go home now"?

But here G-d was communicating a vital message. In a way this was the 11th commandment. You have heard my message. Now take it home. Take it into your lives.

G-d was saying, "You just received a divine revelation. You listened very attentively to the My voice. But the point of the revelation is that it should impact your daily lives. If you have heard G-d's voice, you should better be able to hear the voice of your fellow human being. If you are closer to G-d, it should be apparent in the way you go about your daily business. So go back to your tents, and let me see how you have been transformed. Let me see how you eat lunch."

Spiritual experiences are not supposed to affect our souls. They are supposed to affect our blintzes. Our souls are holy already, but our eating, our daily activities, our blintzes are in need of elevation. The test of a truly spiritual person is not in the way they pray or meditate or talk to G-d, but rather after they pray, in the way they eat and do business and talk to their cleaning lady. If you can only be holy in a house of prayer but not in your own house, you've missed the point.

So after hearing the Ten Commandments read in synagogue this Shavuos, eat a blintz or two, and see if you can make that a soulful experience. If you can't find G-d in a blintz, you need to learn some more Torah.

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