Monday, January 29, 2018

Three big misconceptions about the Torah

Here are three big misconceptions about the Torah that I have encountered in my study.
  1. People think that just because Torah says something it must be true.
  2. People think that Torah is not connected to nature or anything external and constitutes a thing on its own, regardless of the scientific evidence to the contrary.
  3. People think that their incorrect interpretation of the Torah that makes their life hard is normal.
The first misconception is a folly of religious people. Since they using blind faith instead of reason and logic, they are forcing themselves to believe many incorrect Torah inconsistencies that our copy of the text is full of. They do not care if the text makes sense or if it contradicts science, they are just blindly believing in what the text says. They are essentially idolizing the Torah.

The second misconception is also found among religious people. They are usually poorly educated and therefore unable to see that Torah is abstract and transcendent and that it is interconnected with the Universe and nature. They fail to see that Torah and science must go together. Otherwise, Torah can be safely considered a fairy tale and disregarded.

Non-religious people have the same misconception. They fail to see that Torah is different from the rest of the Bible and they fail to see its logical and rational nature because they have a pre-existing belief that Torah is a made-up story. Most of them never even read the text, let alone properly understood it.

The third misconception is again a problem of religious people. They fail to see that the Universe, nature, and God follow the Occam's Razor principle, namely that simplest explanation is usually the correct one and that everything seeks the path of least resistance. So when Torah interpretation produces burdensome results, it is usually a solid sign that interpretation is incorrect and illogical/irrational.

Of'course, some of the Torah commandments require sacrifices and a certain degree of inconvenience to one's way of life, but things, like not burning fire or not using electricity on Shabbat, goes well beyond reasonable hardship necessity.

So as you can see, most people have huge misconceptions about the Torah and what it is.

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