Inquire, Inquire – 2
Monday June 17, 2019
(14 Sivan 5779)
Another significant question that religion may claim to answer is “What is the nature of the soul?” Specifically, am I an independent being, detached from a greater Being than myself? Can I only rely on myself or others, to solve my concerns, issues, and problems? Or, can I look for answers from Above? In Victor Frankl’s Man’s Search for Ultimate Meaning (not to be confused with his previous book, Man’s Search for Meaning) he wrote that man’s conscience is connected to something greater than himself.
Therefore, our very souls are connected to G-d. This is in accord with the teachings of chassidism, regarding the soul, whereby the highest level of the soul, the yechida, us directly attached to G-d. We are not entities, separated from G-d; except, when we sin, this results in “a feeling of separation,” as opposed to a permanent actuality (see Isaiah 59:2).
Another question, does religion provide benefits towards “the whole person,” i.e., mind, body, and spirit? Rather than give a definitive answer, I would prefer to ask the question, for the sake of others, who may find their own answer. For myself, I sincerely believe that my own religious belief and practice addresses mind, body, and spirit. This tenet may be a surprise to those whom may believe traditional religion lacks an effectual influence on these components of the human being. Many who are drawn to “spirituality,” especially within the New Age Movement would categorize religion as dry, hypocritical, and impotent, particularly, in regard to spiritual experience. I would claim otherwise; furthermore , I would profess what has been emphasized in an article by a certain Jewish rabbi, that religion and spirituality complement each other. Metaphorically speaking, they are two sides of the same coin (see Weinreb, parashas Shemini: “Religion vs. Spirituality”). If you are interested in reading the article, here is the link: