Wednesday, July 28, 2021

Can you give me one good reason to believe in a young earth?

"Can you give me one good reason to believe in a young earth", I asked.
"We have a Torah", the rabbi replied.
"Ok, but where does the Torah say anything about a young earth? That's speculation. Interpretation. Genesis could just as easily be read in support of an old universe if you were inclined to do so. In fact there are a fortune of suggestions in the Rabbinic literature that tell us the Sages were not wed to the idea of a young earth. In fact a few of our great Rabbis expressly embraced the idea of an old universe.
So, given all of that plus the piles of evidence and peer reviewed studies that tell us the universe is fantastically old what, specifically, obligates us to believe in a young earth?"
The rabbi acknowledged my point, to his credit but left my question unanswered so I'll repeat it here:
Why do otherwise intelligent Jews think that denying the ample scientific evidence for the old universe and rejecting the ample rabbinic support for the old universe is some kind of high religious accomplishment? Isn't it just stupid?

Thursday, July 22, 2021

Susannah Levin Quit her Job at Ben and Jerry: Is She Making a Mistake?

I fear this nice woman may have made a terrible mistake. Ben and Jerry is CONTINUING to sell ice cream in Israel. The only inconvenience for Jews is that those living in settlements will now need to drive a few minutes into Israel to purchase their ice cream. This is something to quit about?

What is really bothering her?

As the great Joshua Shanes tell us a boycott of the West Bank IS NOT the same as a boycott of Israel itself, and we should not equate the two.

Because if you do equate the two, you're putting yourself in a bit of a moral predicament. Here's why:

When people accuse Israel of being an apartheid state, the correct and popular reply is this: The West Bank is the problem, and the West Bank is not part of Israel; however...

When you sit shiva over boycotts of the West Bank, such as this one, you're confessing that you do not actually believe that the West Bank is not part of Israel. And if you say the West Bank is really and truly part of Israel you're also saying the the detractors are correct when they accuse Israel of apartheid.

If you think the Ben and Jerry boycott is something to cry about, by necessity, you also must think that Israel is not a democracy. If you think this boycott of the West Bank alone, constitutes a boycotts of Israel itself you make it impossible to defend Israel against accusations of apartheid. 

So which is it true believers?