Friday, September 4, 2009

Matisyahu: Credo Quia Absurdum

Jane: Oh, my boss is so mean! I hate his guts!
John: Don't you ever feel down, thinking how you're always gonna be stuck with this jerk?
Jane: Nope, I know that I'm gonna be his boss one of these days.
Jack: How do you know that?
Jane: Well, since the day I've been hired, I've been waiting and praying for a promotion.

Mark: I'm so damn broke! There's no way I can pay next month's rent.
Mary: What's your plan for the future? Are you maybe gonna get off your butt and start working?
[Mary and Mark are truckers, so pardon the indelicate expressions.]
Mark: Nah, I'm winning the lottery soon.
Mary: Are you certain of that, young man?
Mark: Well, all my live I've been waiting and praying to win the lottery.

Mark and Jane are being stupid. They're saying, "X is true, because I've always thought it to be true." Need I prove the fallacy of this statement?

Matisyahu does the same thing in "One Day":
sometimes in my tears I drown
but I never let it get me down
so when negativity surrounds
I know some day it'll all turn around
all my live I've been waiting for
I've been praying for
for the people to say
that we don't wanna fight no more
there'll be no more wars
and our children will play

In general, in matters of religious faith, people are allowed to believe things simply because that's what they believe.

John: Why do y'all read the Talmud instead of just reading God's word?
Yochanan: Well, we believe that the Talmud contains God's will and wisdom.

Shabbat Shalom to all, and remember, if you don't eat any cholent, you're a heretic!


  1. I haven't listened to the song in question, but one criticism I heard is that he's hoping for a day, or something like that, and what will happen on that day? His children will say that they're hoping for a day! Like, hello!

  2. Oh shucks, I guess now I'm a shikse.

    'In general, in matters of religious faith, people are allowed to believe things simply because that's what they believe.'

    Well duh. And duh. You can't give a REASON for belief, just like you can't give a reason for DISBELIEF. By saying, 'I don't believe in (blank), because I have found a reasonable doubt that it is indeed false', is still not a reason on it's own.

  3. The song sounds nice, but I agree it's overly wishy-washy. He lost his tochen when he lkeft chabad.
    -TRS: It was on my blog, where were you?

  4. You mean, I should listen to him sing? I haven't done that in 2.5 years!

  5. You'll need something to do teshuvah for under chupah . . .

  6. Trs: that criticism is based on mishearing the lyrics. It's "and our children will play... one day" not "and our children will say."

  7. altie: why is religious faith different than other things? no one would say "I believe that sushi is unhealthy simply because that's what I believe." Why is religious faith different.

  8. Mottel: "smile when they need you, smile when they leave you."

  9. If a person indeed said this "I believe that sushi is unhealthy simply because that's what I believe." You might call him an idiot and tell him to prove it. If he could, that would give credence to his originally false statement. That is not an opinionated or isolated statement. He would have to bring facts to back it up.

    If I said 'smoking is unhealthy', I wouldn't automatically be shot down, because it's already been proven that smoking is truly unhealthy. I could bring facts that were already proven by other people, but this is a public and well known issue. The surgeon general warns about it on the back of cigarette boxes.

    A belief in G-d or religion is different. It can not be compartmentalized. Can you tell me for certain that G-d exists? Can you tell me for certain that G-d does NOT exist? You can not do either.

    People before you, and people way after our times, will go through the frustrating process of trying to prove G-ds existence one way or the other. But it can not be done.

    G-d is abstract. Whether He is 'real' in our minds or not, he is not a 'thing.' He is not a statement, or a fact. He is a thesis. He is a theory.

    Does fire burn you if you touch it? yes. how do you know that? because it's been tried, and proven to be true. Would you just take it with a grain of salt, that its really true, or would you be stupid enough to try it yourself first?

    Some things in this world CAN be proven. And some can't, and never will. And those things constitute private beliefs, because they will never be definitely proven one way or another.

    So why is religious faith different? Simply because it can't be proven, and therefor we are forced to forever rely on our own thoughts and opinions on the matter. And as you know, an opinion can not be 'wrong'.

  10. Dara O'brian said concerning science and homeopathy, "Just because science doesn't know everything doesn't mean you can fill in the gaps with whatever fairytale most appeals to you."

  11. Really. So you should wait a few more 1000 years until science DOES know everything, and die out in the meantime, instead of finding an alternative?

    And how does this consist of a fairy tale? Religion is not a fairy tale.

    Tell me, can you prove to me that G-d doesn't exist?

  12. The point of that quote wasn't that you need to wait a thousand years for science to give you all the answers. the point is that you gotta select your non-scientific explanations carefully.

  13. So youre basically telling me, 'nice try lady, but that's all bullshit'?

    Forget it. I'm not going to argue with you because you don't seem to want to reach a conclusion. You just want to argue. So you know what? Go in front of a mirror and argue with your own egotistical self, and guess what??? You'll win every time!!

  14. Sara: is that the best comment you can come up with?

  15. Altie,

    1. G-d’s existence can be proven.
    2. An opinion can be wrong.
    3. Something that cannot be proven is not worth to be believed in.
    4. Judaism is not based on faith.

  16. 1. prove it
    2. o⋅pin⋅ion
    a personal view, attitude, or appraisal.
    No it can't.
    3. That is not true. Just because it can't be proven doesn't make it not true. Science can not prove everything.
    4. prove it.

  17. 1. click here (for reading: Ch. 2, 3, 6, then the rest)

    2. Personal view can be wrong. Attitude too, but for a different reason. An appraisal cannot. If it’s your opinion that the moon is made of cheese, you’re wrong.

    3. I didn’t say it makes it not true. I said there is no reason to believe in it.

    Of course science can prove something to be true. In the limits of definition of proof and truth.

    4. See number 1.

  18. Altie, wanna see me prove it in person (in video)? E-mail me.

  19. if your'e serious, I'll let you know. Not sure if I want to be shot down face to face just yet.

  20. people with a positive attitude live longer

  21. people who think they know what they are talking about, but may in fact be bullshitting, would rather not take chances with people who may actually know what they are talking about.

  22. I made it this far as a pessimist- why change now?

  23. I will just send you a clip of me doing it.

  24. i was talking about the post. but u can be a pesimist if u want.

  25. ca: please email me the video also.

  26. Okay I know you are looking for a logical answer, and this is not gonna help the discussion, but I found this poem, I really like it, read it and comment if you want, but do NOT ridicule me! I hate when you do that.
    (It's in 2 parts cuz the bloody thing only lets 4096 characters. Seriously.)

    The Day I Killed God

    I woke and to my pillow I said,
    "Today is the day I will destroy God."

    I gathered with verve
    My guns and bombs
    My ammunition
    And I said to my mirror,
    "If I were God, where would I be?"

    So began my list,
    And I realized
    I had a long day ahead.

    The churches and temples
    The mosques and shrines
    Were the first to go
    The biggest and loudest homes
    Of the Lord
    The stone was too easy to destroy
    And I said to the rubble,
    "Surely that cannot be all,
    God, he lives yet."

    A great bonfire was sparked
    And with aching arms
    The Bible, the Qu'ran
    The Talmud, the Torah, the Tao De Ching
    The Book of Mormon, Sruti
    The Epic of Gilgamesh
    The Satanic Verses
    Were laid to rest in the flames

    I dusted my hands and
    To the holy ashes I said,
    "These hated words are finally gone,
    And yet, God lives.
    He lives!"

    Despondent then, for I was
    So sure, so certain that
    Once his words were silenced
    That God would cease to breathe

    It was then I entered the world
    And to God's people, I said,
    "Come forth if you know the words!
    Come forth if you believe in him
    And can tell me his name!
    For I wish to meet your maker
    And bring him to his end."

    The crowds gathered
    Like patient sheep
    With angry eyes
    These billions of faces
    Old and young
    In every color and grace
    Beautiful and homely
    Dull and bright
    Good and evil

    As I stared at them all
    A bright light erupted
    And then I stood before him,
    God himself!
    The apex of my conquest!
    He looked down at me
    With questions of his own
    And to me he said,
    "I hear you are looking for me."

    I said to God.
    "Today is the day you will die."

    God thought a moment
    And unfolded his arms
    He said to me,
    "Shoot, then."

    I opened fire without hesitation
    But God would not fall.
    I said to God,
    "What have I done wrong!
    Your churches have fallen,
    Your words are smoke,
    And you are all that is left.
    Yet you stand and mock me!
    I have destroyed you!"

    God, he shrugged
    As if he had not before thought about
    Why he was still breathing.
    God said to me,
    "What am I?"

    I said to God,
    "You are a belief, and
    One I hate.
    A belief I want destroyed.
    I have destroyed your houses.
    I have destroyed your words.
    Have I not destroyed you, God?"

    And God said to me,
    "Here I sit.
    The problem you don't seem to realize, sir,
    Is that there is but one way to destroy a belief.
    And you have not done it this day."

  27. I said to God,
    "What madness do you speak?"

    God silenced me with a raised hand
    And he said to me,
    "An idea, a thought, a belief,
    Is, by all rights, immortal. Eternal.
    And will live long after I expire.
    Beliefs may build the church
    And write the books,
    But these are just red herrings, sir.
    The only way to destroy the belief
    Is to destroy the people who believe it.
    If it is all they breathe for,
    Then you must quiet their breath."

    Bewildered, my weapon fell
    To the softened ground
    And with tears I said,
    "But God,
    Those people are not you.
    All those faces that worship you,
    They are not you.
    And it is you I wish to kill.
    Not them,
    Not these souls as fragile as me."

    God offered empty hands to me
    And he said,
    "There is but one way."

    My lips quivered,
    "The children and the old?
    The saints and sinners?
    The lame and the mute?
    But, God,
    It is you I hate
    It is your words and your way
    That I wish dead,
    Your demanding tyranny
    That I want gone
    Not the followers who
    Only live for your grace.
    By choice, by free will,
    Just as surely as I chose
    To get out of bed this morning."

    God's empty hands and
    Tiny, sorry smile,
    They spoke volumes.
    He said,
    "That is where I live, sir.
    Without their hearts,
    I would be nothing.
    And so it is their hearts
    You must stop.
    There is no difference
    Not a hair of separation
    You cannot annihilate beliefs
    And deity
    Without annihilating the people
    Who live it.

    "Choose you now, sir,
    Now that you understand
    That there is no institution,
    No church,
    No clergy or book
    That you can fight
    Without fighting
    Your fellow men.
    If you want to kill me,
    Kill them.

    "But if your heart knows better
    The tragedy, the falsehood
    Of imposing your will on another,
    Then let them live,
    And let me live, too."

    --© Megan Dipo 2009


Forth shall ye all hold.