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Define Your Terms
Lori Almost Live

Define Your Terms

Stop arguing and strive to reach a mutual understanding.

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Published: October 21, 2012


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Visitor Comments: 7

(7) Barbara, October 26, 2012 3:51 PM

At last, a way to end/begin the argument

Thank you, Lori, for finally giving me the words I need to counter a person in my life who is very anti religion out of ignorance but refuses to open up and learn.

(6) Anonymous, October 24, 2012 6:18 AM

Good Topic

Hi Lori, Your point about creating a question of definition was a great point. Finding "happiness" and "being a good person are defined differently throughout the world" is what I got out of this. To create a generalized label of "being a good person" is vague. "Let's dig more" is what I believe is what was projected through your words. Yes, Rabbis just like all humans have a lot to learn and if they've forgotten this, it just proves my point. (Meaning if they are "closing doors" and "full of themselves" they've forgotten something critical in their teach or, haven't mastered the right way of teaching others) Not only knowing Laws but compassion and understanding are also critical requirements! Despite some personality flaws that some may have though, they are highly highly educated in Torah Law. The wonderful thing about the internet is that I don't have to rely solely on my community Rabbi's. I can seek out opinions and answers from Rabbi's throughout the world now! Looking within ourselves and having a personal connection with God is very important but it's also important to listen to and interpret other people's connections with God. Give them the proper respect and then come up with an answer to "being a good person". Solely relying on oneself can turn into something dangerous. We are a social group in fact, one of the scariest things that can happen to us is being disconnected to others and God. Thank you for your words Lori!

(5) ruth housman, October 23, 2012 4:39 PM

what really is happy? what really is good?

I think my kids would be unhappy, ultimately if they had too much chocolate. If they did not go to school. That's an argument I could make with you, and we could discuss this. You are right, we need to define our terms but actually I don't ask my local rabbi, because when I did, I found them filled with themselves, and actually not listening. I don't believe rabbis are the Source of all Widsom, and I think they too, have much to learn. Forgive me for saying this, because all my life I have had beautiful mystical experiences, and all my life I have been writing down the lines, heart and soul. And I learned, to go, directly to God, and I learned the ultimate Source has everything to do with the good and yes, we can define this in really sick ways. But Hillel did have a definition, and yes, even that definition has its codicils, but he did say, somethig about all Torah, as in defining how we are with each other. Now if we aren't punitive with each other, and if we are loving, and open to each other, and if we celebrate diversity, and work for peaceful coexistence, and in many ways we can define, we do refine this notion of LOVE, and GOOD, sure. But all Torah can be summed up as Hillel did, with the one codicil that is, do not be an enemy to yourself, and respect yourself and all that you do, as in being "kind". There is this notion of the yetzer in life too, and we learn to shun words of hatred, genocide, etc as the outer yetzer. I also take issue with you though of course, Torah is a guide, but the ultimate guide happens to be, God, and it is possible to have as one's mentor the Source. I hear a lot of voices and a lot of closed doors exist in the rabbinical profession, so I would be careful about this, and define, which rabbi, whose language, whose terms, too.

(4) Geo Tavernaris, October 23, 2012 3:20 PM

These are beautiful words and truly thought provoking. God bless you, Lori.

(3) Erik, October 23, 2012 2:30 AM

God bless you Lori !

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