Jtube: The Adjustment Bureau

Do we just have the "appearance" of free will?

Do we just have the "appearance" of free will?

This video encourages the discussion of Jewish values as they relate to contemporary culture. Jewlarious does not endorse any particular film.

Comments (11)

(8) Michael, August 17, 2011 4:15 AM

Encapsulates or not?

Free will- was in my opinion displayed quite well by the movie. Not in the Torah way of course, but drives home the importance of it above all. There is a plan, we can choose! In the movie, they seem to give credence to possibility of mistake and the need for agents to adjust it. In the Torah way the plan is infinite, all decisions are planned for whichever way we choose. As I see it....please critique.

(7) John, July 14, 2011 12:16 PM

How could you know?

Until HaShem answers the question we will have to try to follow the Torah with what we believe is our free will.

(6) jacob, July 12, 2011 4:35 PM



(5) Antonio Perez, July 12, 2011 4:08 PM

The Big Question

Ah, the time honored question, "Free will or predestination (fate, whatever you want to call it)". It's philosophy. The real question is, "Will you chose to obey Ha Shem and His Torah or not." That's the important question. I guess that answers the question of free will or not.

(4) Jeffery Alper, July 12, 2011 2:36 PM

sounds great

I loved the movie and the premise sounds good, then we have someone else to blame if things don't turn out as "planned". Although I am "sure" that life is not like this, I mean would G-d do all of the things that we "know" happened in "real" life?

R.K., July 20, 2011 3:35 PM

Well, I think the Torah view differs from what the movie presents on this point

The section selected from the film (I haven't seen more than that of it) makes it sound like the Chairman (I guess that's an indirect way of saying "G-d") just withdraws at certain points, and that's when the world goes off the deep end. If I'm not mistaken, that's not entirely the Torah view. G-d doesn't just let things go "wrong" because He doesn't want to intervene. He permits things that seem bad to the human mind because to His mind these seeming tragedies, troubles, and annoyances are part of a greater plan that we can't (yet, or maybe even ever) understand. (See Psalm 92 and the Book of Iyov/Job))

(3) Baruch Berger, July 11, 2011 7:55 PM

Man's Search for Meaning

Everything can be taken from man but one thing: That last of the human freedoms – To choose one’s attitude. Viktor Frankl

(2) ynge, July 11, 2011 4:17 PM

Free will?

Did we ever have free will? Or we just think we do?

(1) Laura, July 10, 2011 12:21 PM

G-d is in control

All the time ...whether we want him to be or not

Anonymous, July 12, 2011 12:09 AM


It is disturbing to think that people could substitute "The Chairman" in this clip for "G-d". Yes, G-d is in control, and every minute detail of life plays a role in His ultimate Plan, but there are many critical differences between G-d -- and "the Chairman" of the clip (aside from the obvious difference that G-d is not an old man with a board to consult). One difference is, as Laura said, G-d never steps back. He gives us the brains, capabilities, opportunities, to see the world in a true light and to make the right choices, always. During the Enlightenment, as well as during the Holocaust, each individual had and continues to have the ability to choose good over evil. And that is the next difference; that we have complete free will, even as G-d is in complete control of the course of the universe. Yes, it may seem to be a paradox, and maybe it is -- for our minds limited by time -- but the fact remains that G-d commands us in the Torah to choose from the good and evil that He places before us; to choose good. To choose Life. If it's all an illusion, then what is the point of struggling for Good? Why wouldn't He just tell us to choose whatever's easier? Because our struggles for truth are very real, and they impact who we become and what the future looks like. G-d's Will will endure, but to make the mistake of thinking that we might as well rot in front of a TV while G-d runs the world, and it'll be the same anyway-- this is a mistake that resigns us to eternal shame and failure. This is giving up the most beautiful, very real gift that defines who were are as humans: free will.

Anonymous, July 12, 2011 4:34 PM

Thank you

for your inspired comments. I want to believe that the pain, both personal and the pain of bearing witness to injustice on the planet (eg.Africa) has a purpose. That by living and knowing I will become a stronger, better person. I want to believe that Hashem has given me this life and this empathy for a reason. I want to believe that I can overcome the pain. I want to believe. Your comments are so gentle and sure. I will read and re read them today.


Submit Your Comment:

  • Display my name?

  • Your email address is kept private. Our editor needs it in case we have a question about your comment.

  • * required field 2000
Submit Comment

Receive Weekly Jewlarious Emails

Sign up to our Jewlarious Newsletter.

Our privacy policy