Catch 22 or 23,24,25…
Posted by whitefrodude on August 2, 2007
As I sat at my friend’s house during Shabbas dinner the typical Jewish argument came up. Now let me explain what I mean by “the typical Jewish argument”. Every week as we eat our dinner some topic about Judaism pops up between talk of the newest movie release and the weekly gossip. Now I love to argue, let me rephrase that, I love to discuss the opposite side of whatever the current topic happens to be.
So getting back to the argument, I mean discussion that was discussed this week. One of my friends mentioned that a Jew is supposed to have meaning behind the laws that they follow. The two examples used in this situation were keeping Shabbas and repenting on Yom Kippur. He said that keeping Shabbas should have meaning to the person doing it. Also he said that one cannot just apologize on Yom Kippur without actually meaning it when they apologize. I argued that since if I kept Shabbas it would have no meaning (I’m not that religious) I should not be doing it because it has much more meaning not to do it for me. Also on Yom Kippur if I do not have meaning behind the apology that I am giving someone then I should not be doing it.
True problem lies in this, the Talmud also says that if one is made aware of a law then they are responsible for keeping them (thanks lchaimlover). So if I am aware of the laws, but would only do them because it says so and I would have no real meaning behind them, what am I supposed to do? I ask you good readers, what do you believe? Should I be following the laws without meaning? Should I not follow the laws because I am aware of them?