Communique "Decalogue Part I" 3-5-2021
Over the past few years, four and counting to be exact, I have seen a great number of events unfold in the political arena that have managed to “set off” internal alarm bells relating to religion and its abuse by those who would profit at the expense of those who for the most part seek only to have a better relationship with God.
For this and this alone is the true and singular gift that religion, path, or way can afford us and, if along the way, it makes it a bit easier for us mere mortals on our journey to the top, so much the better.
Is the road to heaven truly paved with gold and riches? Or, is it more likely to be a series of lessons, some hard, and some not so nearly so. Hard to tell. My gut take on this life in general is some days will be better than others, and I tend to leave it at that.
For those of you who are my readers, you know that I in no way believe religion by its very nature is evil and should be abolished. With that said, I am not foolish enough to believe that the words of God can be twisted into pretzels placed within a labyrinth and into a maze until the average unwary believer is left without a basic understanding of which way is up and down. Until the answer is whatever “they” tell you it is.
This is where regardless of your individual faith perhaps God’s greatest gift, the Ten Commandments reveals its time-tested wisdom as the single most important guiding light in our time here on Earth.
As a member of the Jewish faith I was raised believing (and still do) it is our job to seek, explore and to know our Creator to the best of our abilities and although we may never be privy to all the celestial knowledge available from above, we do the best we can.
Why? Because in Judaism, the goal is not to get to heaven. I already know that one day I will sit by God’s side. Now, with that said, we might have a more interesting or not talk about exactly went on below, mostly along the lines of, yes, I suppose I could have done a bit better on that one (for me lots of those) but in the end analysis I will be shown all the love and mercy that any proud father shows his children and indeed so much more for that is way of my God.
To clarify, this does not mean I believe that we are the “chosen people”. In fact, it is the exact opposite of what I consider to be the idiotic and ungodly process of deciding who and who does not go to heaven. What it does mean is of all the tribes God have chosen to live with, he chose us and with that decision came a rule book of how to live one’s life while in his presence. This we call Torah.
And so, in many ways many of my fellow Jews think it is a burden to be Jewish, that we have chosen to live by a strict, and at times scary set of rules that according to Torah, end up in thunderbolts and lightning that would be the envy of today's modern drone strike. But I have never felt that way and it is because God also gave us the Ten Commandments as our ultimate guide. My advice at times of trouble? Try reading the Ten Commandments, then maybe, let it be. That’s at least how it works best for me.
Today, I would like to take a look at Commandments One and Two, both of which deal with the nature of God and how we in kind should react to follow his wisdom and his wishes, all the while safe in the belief it is the way to know Him better.
Commandment I. “You shall have no other gods before me. Although I have heard this what I believe to be a simple commandment in the negative often along the lines of ours being a vain and inglorious God, I fail to see this. From the very first time I saw the First Commandment, I felt as if God was taking me aside, almost as a friend, to assure me that He was indeed stating the truth and always would be the only one who cared enough and could.
That he wanted me to succeed in life and yes, he loved me. Sort of a for the good, bad, or indifferent, I will always give it to you straight. How just darn valuable is that? For me, this is also the proper basis for belief, knowing that the unknown is only a mystery to one of us and He will always illuminate his way, the one and only right way.
I have always found this even at the worst of times a great comfort and an indication to never give up on faith, no matter how bleak the temporal situation may be. Have you ever heard the saying “this too, shall pass”? Well, yes it will, guaranteed and yes if you believe in nothing more than the First Commandment, his will be done.
The Second Commandment is even more straight forward. “You shall not make idols.” and it is this Commandment and the recent events at CPAC that has set off this firestorm of thoughts, not doubts mind you, but how in the world can anyone who claims to be a follower of the Judeo-Christian order build and then bow down to nothing more than a cartoon character of a false prophet in the shape, image and likeness of Donald J. Trump?
I admit I don’t see where it is written that every prophet must be perfect, but here we have a lying con man who violates the Ten Commandments on a nearly daily basis and thereby making a literal “art-form” out of practicing the Seven Deadly Sins as his own personal Gospel? You can say God works in mysterious ways all you want, but my take on that is you just want to justify your own sins and nothing, and I mean absolutely nothing more.
If you are one that is looking for God’s “sacred vessel” in the form of the most inglorious and unlikely places, then so be it. But remember this, we are all the vessels of God and He has given all of us his playbook. He has given you the way, and to deny the ultimate and inescapable conclusion that you too, that we all are divine in nature is in my books a sin of immeasurable consequences, both above and below.
More to follow. Why, indeed we still have no less than Eight Commandments to go, and then some. God Bless You and God Bless America.
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