Thursday, July 20, 2006

Proving the Torah

We discussed in the forums that Torah is different than all the other so-called “religions” in that every other religion began with some guy claiming to have heard G-d tell him that He (G-d) wants to start a religion. Unverifiable, and hardly very believable. So all religions are based on “belief”, blind belief in a prophet who claims that G-d confided in him about starting the religion.

Of course, these religions could not claim that G-d came to the masses and said “Hello, I want to start Christianity”, because the masses don’t know anything about it. If Yoshkah would have told everyone “The Creator of the world came to all of us 400 years ago and told all of our ancestors to follow Yoshkah”, they of course would have said, “Hey Yoshkah, how come you’re the only one that knows about this?”. You can’t make up a story that involves the ancestors of millions upon millions of people.

But the Torah does just that. Hashem came to the entire nation saying, “I am Hashem. This is what I want from you…” If a human being would have written the Torah and tried to sell this idea to the descendants of the millions at Har Sinai, it could not have worked.

As opposed to Torah, here’s how the other religions started:

CHRISTIANITY – Mary comes home to her husband, Joseph, pregnant. It’s not his, and he’s upset. Joseph says an angel came to him secretly and explained her excuse: “G-d did it.” So now a religion starts. Oh, and Yoshka’s resurrection? Nobody claims to have seen it. Some claim that they saw Yoshkah alive after he was supposed to have been dead, but no verification has ever been provided. (Elvis lives!)

ISLAM – The religion started when Muhammad claimed to have heard a “message from G-d” that he was chosen to be the holy “chat’m” (a special kind of prophet). He heard other messages, too, and he compiled them into what later became the Quran (Koran). Nobody except Muhammad heard these messages. You either believe him or you don’t.

The Quran reports that Mohammed’s mother also heard a voice claiming that her son will be a king and prophet, but we have no idea if this woman ever told this to anyone or the story was made up afterward, never mind if she herself was really telling the truth. Another “secret” revelation.

BUDDISM – Prince Siddhartha Gautama claims to have been supernaturally “enlightened” whilst in the midst of a meditative trance. When he “woke up” he enlightened the rest of the world with his supernaturally obtained truths. (I am not making this up.)

MORMONS – A man named Joseph Smith claims to have been periodically visited by angels, Yoshkah, Hashem Himself – you name it – explaining to him that all religions are fake, and giving him the secret directions to some golden “luchos” with important messages. Smith further claims to have eventually located these tablets, and recorded their message into what is now called The Book of Mormon. A friend of Smith, by the name of Oliver Cowdery also claims to have been visited by certain Talmidim of Yoshkah who bestowed upon both Cowdery and Smith some type of priesthood. (I am not making this up either).

ONE MORE RELIGION WHO CLAIMS A PUBLIC REVELATION (check this out!) – For the following piece of research, I am indebted to Rabbi Leib Kellemen, in “Permission to Receive” (Feldheim, ’96). There is ONE other religion that does indeed claim a public revelation. Some Indian groups have an oral tradition that the Hindu god Krishna addressed millions of warriors who participated in a certain battle. But – get this! – ALL THOSE WHO HEARD KRISHNA DIED IN THE BATTLE. Nobody survived to tell of the revelation. So how do we know it? Take a guess. Some individual, later in history was visited by Krishna privately who told him the story that nobody else knew.

JUDAISM - G-d Himself appeared to millions of Jews and told them "I am Hashem. This is what I want you to do . . . "

No comparison.

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If you concede that we’ve proven the truth of the Torah because the episode of Kabbalas HaTorah could not have been fabricated (please see the rest of this section), then you have proven G-d’s existence as well. It was G-d, wasn’t it, Who did speak to the entire nation at Har Sinai, right?

The fact that “[religion] has been debated” for 5,000 years means nothing. There have been religions that believed in totem poles as gods. The truth has to be assessed by its own merits, not by popular vote. When any of the 5,000 years worth of pagans and wishful thinkers can answer the hard evidence, then I will gladly agree with you. But despite 5,000 years of debate nobody has been able to answer the proofs.

Oh, and don’t mix Judaism with “religions.” There is a fundamental difference that distinguishes Judaism as being unique among them. ALL other religions that claim to know the word of G-d do so by claiming that G-d came to some guy and told him (the guy) that He (G-d) wants them (the people) to follow them (the guy and G-d both). There are never any witnesses to the revelation, never, and for some odd reason, G-d, Who supposedly wants everyone in the world to follow some individual – Yeshua, Mohammed, David Coresh – never told this to any one of them except the one who they are supposed to follow.

So you either believe him or you don’t.

Torah is different. In the Torah, G-d Himself comes to the entire nation, millions of them, and says “I am Hashem. This is what I want you all to do . . .”

NO RELIGION IN THE WORLD CLAIMS THAT G-D HIMSELF REVEALED THE RELIGION TO THE MASSES. It’s always a prophet who is telling us that he “received” the word of G-d. That’s what “religion” is. It’s belief.

Torah is history and fact. Nobody had to believe anybody. G-d Himself appeared to the entire nation and explained things to them. And the reason no religion can duplicate this story is because, as we said, it cannot be fabricated historically (see the “G-d” forum).

"How then, with Torah being accepted as a nation, and G-D being WITNESSED as a nation, were the people of other religions able to convince their children, and they their own children, of the existence and truth of a lie whose very basis in logic is faulty?"

Because nobody can confirm or deny their lies.
Either G-d spoke to Mohammed or He did not. Who's to say? Except Mohammed. If you want to believe him, fine. Nobody can contradict him. The Torah is the only story that cannot be fabricated.

Besides, the fact is that throughout history people have been convinced of the stupidest things, such as totem pole gods, scientology, and assorted nonsensical theologies. It is no problem to convince people to believe a lie that cannot be contradicted by the listeners. The impossibility is convincing people to believe a lie that can be contradicted by the masses.

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Even though we lump Judaism in the same category ("religion") with l'havdil Christianity and Islam, it is in a completely different category. Judaism is the only religion -- the others are clearly just inventions of some leader.

But regarding these two so-called religions, they are a joke. First, both of them would have to agree that their large number of followers doesn't prove anything, since if it does, each would have to explain why the other one has such a large following, even though they are heretics.

The truth is the reason these religions have such followings is because they have been running around for thousands of years trying to convert the world to their religions, using every tactic from falsifying their own religion in order to attract pagans - whatever religion the pagan was from ,they would say Yoshka is the fulfillment of the messiah or prophet of their (the pagan's) religion, copying part of the pagan religions in order to attract followers - to slashing your throat or torturing you to death if you didn't convert.

As opposed to Judaism where we have no interest in attracting converts, certainly in twisting our religion to meet the needs of every flesh-eating barbarian in the world.

As serious religions, these two -Christianity and Islam - never qualified. Their problem is, in order to be accepted as real they knew that they would have to be based on the Torah, since the Torah was accepted as a historical truth, and therefore how can you start a religion thousands of years after the world was already created and people already have a religion that their ancestors saw come from G-d? How can you contradict that?

So they decided to use the Torah as a basis but change it to fit their religion. G-d "changed His mind" the Christians say, which is kind of a problem, since all over the Torah (Devarim 5:26 and tons of other places) it states clearly that the Torah is forever. To this day, the Christians have no answer to this, never mind literally thousands of other disproofs from the Torah.

Perhaps you may believe that there is another side to this story, and that perhaps the Christians can somehow defend themselves? Guess again. Rabbi Lawrence (a.k.a. Leib) Keleman of Jerusalem, who currently teaches in Neve Yerushalayim (and if memory serves Michlelet Esther as well) sent three simple yet devastating disproofs of the New Testament to the doggone Pope John Paul II himself, politely asking for an explanation. The official Catholic Church's answer is printed, with comments, in Rabbi Keleman's "Permission to Receive", pp.205-211.

It's pretty funny. Basically, they admit that the New Testament is not really factually correct, rather, parts (such as the virgin birth) were taken from pagan religions to attract the pagans, and that Yoshka himself wasn't really a descendant of King David, but since the Jews always thought of the messiah as such, they referred to Yoshka in those terms.

Christianity they admit is basically a system of man-made beliefs that they feel are nice and important, but is this religion "true"? Not a chance, they admit.

The Muslims, too, have a joke of a religion, based on the Torah. Even though the Torah was given in front of millions of people, the Quran, which qualifies and changes it, was supposedly given privately to Mohammed and nobody else. It's full of contradictions and disproofs of its authenticity. The fact that they changed Shabbos from Saturday to Friday is itself enough to disprove their religion since it says clearly in the Torah, which they believe in, that Shabbos is the seventh day. Their excuse? I quote:

"The Sabbath was only appointed to those (i.e. Jews) who differed from their prophet concerning it, and your G-d will surely punish . . . for that which they differed." (Quran XVI, The Bee). Which means, that because the Jews "rejected' Friday as the real Shabbos, Hashem "punished" them by giving them the Shabbos on Saturday.

And this detail makes about as much sense as the rest of their religion.

If you want more information on Judaism versus the so-called religions, check out Rabbi Avigdor Miller's Awake My Glory, ch. VI, "The religions".

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6 Comments:

Anonymous taon said...

If you want to discuss this, fine (though I suggest you reread it first, you seem to have made a misunderstanding). But shouting insults is pointless and cruel. comment deleted

9:32 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The question of the number of people who heard the message at Sinai is a problem to many. Some say that there were 6 million Hebrews there - well, that would make them the largest cultural unit in the entire middle east at that time (middle bronze age). The Egyptians seem to have had a population of around 3/4 to 1 million. So, who then enslaves who? In any case, I doubt that many people can envisage a group of 6 million - the logistics of the exodus would seem to be impossible, with or without miracles.
Also, when considering science and Torah, Lawrence Keleman puts up invented arguments and misrepresentations of the Relativity theory. Either he doesn't understand what Einstein said OR, he deliberately misrepresents the statements of the theory in order to make it suit his argument. Many of his points seem to have been copied from Aryeh Kaplan who also misquoted Einstein to suit himself. Einstein's comments are all in print so those who have wit can read and understand.
the difficulty is that the jewish people have been conditioned over centuries to accept anything and everything without testing it for factuality. I've just read in "The midrash Says" that one of the seven things a human cannot know is whether a pregnant woman is carrying a boy or a girl. Well, that may have been true in the past but it certainly isn't today. Ultrasound scans generally show this from about the 8th week of pregnancy. So, one fact wrong. How many others might there be? The only test is to study with an open mind and be prepared to throw out that which is patently absurd.
That doesn't destroy the whole however. The religion might be stronger for it's cleansing.

8:53 AM  
Anonymous taon said...

Please next time, if you want to discuss something, discuss it 1 as an actual discussion, not borderline scorn but actual questions and back and forth 2 in the right place, whether here or on Frumteens 3 using your Frumteens name if you have one.

1 3 million, and re-learn the parsha. Maybe use Rashi as well. What you say about civilization size is discussed, explained, and easily understandable. What you said about slavery was brought up by the mitzrim themselves.
2 I do not know what you are referring to, sorry. I haven't read the sefer you mention. Can you explain what you mean?
3 There must be an misunderstanding here, as that clashes with what we learn elsewhere. As several other things on the list would seem to. We know Yaakov knew when Moshiach would come, among others, and you can tell what someone is thinking by the way they act and so on. Clearly, the Medrash did not mean noone ever at all knows these things. The Midrash Says, as many Sefarim before it, seeks to collect a variety or commentaries on the torah and bring them together so they can be learnt by the layman. This entails omissions and simplifications. It simply is not the purpose to quote and explain every medrash and commentary, but only what is related and usable. Bli neder, if I remember (and am able to get out of my house), I will look up the source for this to see if I can understand what the Medrash or whatever source actually says in context. If anyone reading this knows, please feel free to say. But to just dismiss something you don't understand as false is...below juvenile; as at least children know they don't understand things due to their own lackings and ask. What I don't understand is this. You're clearly intelligent. What could have led you to such a conclusion, and such brutal writing? Trying to understand why you wrote what you wrote was..strange. I can't get a picture of you, it's all contradictory. And why you were reading these only to dismiss in such a fashion...clearly something is going on. I know a little of human nature after all this time. What's going on? OR was, as you may insist.
Your final statements show you definitely have a rocky religious background. I'm not sure it deserves a reply, except that "to study with an open mind and be prepared to throw out" is a more vulgar way or describing the exact way Torah has always been learnt! Perhaps some teachers don't show the proper way of understanding, but a glance at commentaries and Gemorah would make it clear. We have always analyzed. Asked. Even questioned, and if anything is found to be false in any way even the one who said it is prepared to toss it. If there was soemthing false in the Torah, it would have been abandoned, not just the falsehood itself. Three thousand years, many of the greatest minds in a critical, sometimes even anti-Torah at first position, and nothing. Und vous?

4:23 PM  
Anonymous taon said...

For obvious respons, I'm not putting up your 'response', if you'd call it that.
As for number three, I wasn't able to gain real access to the primary sources. There is a slightly different list in the Gemorah, I have not yet had a chance to see why, or if it's really the same list. What I did see, though, was that the reasons for each are always given right there. This seemed a little odd, almost unnecessary. From what I have seen is, this list only applies when the reasons apply. That's why there were exceptions. The reason given for hiding the gender of unborn children is to prevent abortions if a rasha doesn't want that gender. The time that the gender usually is confirmed within reason (It's still unsure, even late into the pregnancy) is the same time the fetus' movements are felt. Among other things. Basically, there's less a chance of killing the infant at this point. In addition to the parents' attatchment, and the obviousness of the pregnancy; most methods or abortion after this point are dangerous and/or illegal. Also, the baby may well be considered alive by this point. Not that killing girls is as common now anyway.
So, based on what little I know, there seems to be no contradiction.

5:45 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The biggest problem with this proof is the fact that in Sefer Ezra we are told that the Jews had forgotten Torah and that he taught it us all again. Hence, he could have made it up.

10:34 AM  
Anonymous taon said...

Sorry for the delay. I had replied, but I did something wrong and only later realized it didnt go up. Basically
1 It doesnt say that
2 If it did, the majority of Jews were outside Israel and not at all under Ezras command
3 even if they would listen, there were Jews from the time of the destruction still alive
4 even without them the sefarim in Kesuvim testify that the Jews knew about the Torah then, they couldnt be convinced their parents knew and forgot in such a short time
5 besides that, the kusim who came at that time obviously wouldnt have listened, and they believed in some of the Torah
6 even besides all this, the Torah says it would never be forgotten. so such a lie would never work.

6:48 PM  

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