By way of preface:
The "Jewish Spirituality" mailing list is an outgrowth of several conversations in which people told me that they felt "alone" in their quest to develop their relationship with Gd. I knew they weren't alone, just from my own interactions with other people, and so I extended an invitation to the Jewish community of Rhode Island to join in a weekly mailing list exploring issues within their relationship with HaShem.
Many of the messages posted on the list reflect people's personal struggles and sensitivities. As a result, some of the people who post remarks on this list opt to do so anonymously; they send me the e-mail, and I drop their names. The list is "blind cc'd," as well, so that no one knows who else is on the list. Our goal is that the members of this list should draw strength and inspiration from the words of their peers, and thereby continue to develop as Jews.
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Jewish Spirituality - Volume 20
Gd and Fatherhood
Subject: Gd and Fatherhood
By: Scott Spiegler
I have been quite busy, hence, my limited contributions. But, here is a question to this group
that has been on my mind of late.
As everyone knows, there are many places in Jewish literature where G-d is referred to as Father. And, this analogy, of course, is being made with the human father of each person. In discussions I have been having, the question of how tightly does the analogy hold, has come up.
Meaning, if we are going to refer to G-d as Father in certain contexts, how far do we take this analogy?
Here are some specifics:
1. Can I ask G-d for specific things, as a child would ask his human father?
a. How (in what form) will I receive the response to my request?
b. What should my response be to His response, when I am happy with the response?
c. When I am not?
d. If not, is it reasonable to be unhappy with his response when what he does is for the Good?
e. Are there ways to change the response in the future?
2. Does G-d love us as individuals?
a. How would I know that, were it true? How does He express love?
3. What does G-d provide for me?
a. What does He not?
These are many questions, I realize. I put them out there, in the hope that some of them will connect to you in a personal way. If they do, I would appreciate hearing your thoughts and feelings on the question(s).
Have a great Shabbos,
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