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TOPIC TITLE: Religion
Created On 1/31/07 2:36 AM
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Belly
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1/31/07 2:36 AM
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I'm not sure if this is the right place to post this question, but I'll try.

I feel that depression has had a really bad influence on me believing in our religion. Now I still keep eveything and I do have a "direct line" to Hashem, meaning that I feel comfort in knowing that He is there for me, but I don't feel so religious. I do things because I have to and not because I believe in them.
I'm worried about it, since I do have kids and would like to pass on to them the love to Torah and our religion.
I'm sure that some of my resistance to religion has to do with me blaming being religious is the cause to my problems. I know that religion itself didn't cause my problems. It was the way things were handled around it.
One big issue I have, which is probably the biggest problem, is that I was brought up with this attitude that if you do something wrong or not excactly the way it's supposed to be you will burn in hell. Ok I put it in extreme ways, but yes basically that's the way we were brought up. I hate this attitude. I try to teach my kids that Hashem is loving and forgives us for our mistakes. It doesn't mean that we can walk around doing whatever we want, but I really don't want them to suffer from guilt feelings for evey little thing they do.
I would love to hear how other people here feel about this issue.
Is there a way back to feeling religious?
Belly
 
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killedlastyear
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OMG. that hell thing you said. freaks me out SO bad. Death seriously is the scariest thing for me. i live every day fearing the day i die. The fear is so strong that i almost want to kill myself because i get so anxious i dont know what to do. But of course i cant kill myself because thats the one thing that i fear most. It drives me crazy. and its all because of this thing they like drilled into us at school. YOU WILL SUFFER AND GO TO HELL WHEN YOU DIE.
why?
why did they have to do that?
its so weird because i thought i was the only person who was so upset about that.

unlike you though i pretty much became apethetic to religion. depression has made me too tired to care. angerness towards religious people who have not behaved kindly has lead me to rebellion. i'm too tired to care, don't see the point, and don't understand why i should.
 
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su7kids
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1/31/07 11:12 AM
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In a Jewish school you were taught about Hell? I thought as Jews we don't believe in it. I think, right now, for the sake of your children, you should so what you're supposed to, and when you're ready, the feelings will come again.

Judaism is not about "feeling it being right". Its about doing it because Hashem said so. Hashem asks us to do OUR BEST, not to be PERFECT. So, do your best right now, and continue teaching your children tha Hashem is loving, becuase He is.

Hugs to you!


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Proud Mom of 7, MIL to 3, Grandmom of 4!
 
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gad
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Happiness makes everything brighter. And depression makes everything gloomy.

Probably the most important thing is to follow a doctor's instructions.

It may be a good idea to volunteer in chesed projects, because when we help others it often makes us happy.

So what is hell?

I remember being taught that the "fire" of hell is not a physical fire, but rather the embarrassment (like when a person's face turns fiery red from shame) when we view our past deeds and we ask ourselves, "How could I have done that?" Furthermore, this is not meant as a punishment by an avenging G-d, but rather as a cleansing for our own benefit by a benevolent G-d.


Your direct line to Hashem is an indication that that you do have a strong and personal and close relationship to G-d. And children are impacted most strongly by example, so it stands to reason that they will also absorb this loving relationship with G-d.

In general a person can feel more upbeat about religion when they feel that they are accomplishing something meaningful. Chassidus expains that we are here to make the world a G-dly place (by bringing more light and holiness into the world via Torah, Mitzvos, acts of kindness etc.) which will come to perfection when Moshiach comes. And then we will feel very good about our contribution, and enjoy a world in which G-d's presence will be revealed.
 
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Belly
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2/1/07 2:06 AM
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Quote

Originally posted by: gad


So what is hell?

I remember being taught that the "fire" of hell is not a physical fire, but rather the embarrassment (like when a person's face turns fiery red from shame) when we view our past deeds and we ask ourselves, "How could I have done that?" Furthermore, this is not meant as a punishment by an avenging G-d, but rather as a cleansing for our own benefit by a benevolent G-d.





Thank you Gad for posting this. I have never heard this and it makes our religion so much nicer this way.

 
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killedlastyear
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Quote

Originally posted by: gad
Happiness makes everything brighter. And depression makes everything gloomy.


So what is hell?

I remember being taught that the "fire" of hell is not a physical fire, but rather the embarrassment (like when a person's face turns fiery red from shame) when we view our past deeds and we ask ourselves, "How could I have done that?" Furthermore, this is not meant as a punishment by an avenging G-d, but rather as a cleansing for our own benefit by a benevolent G-d.


That is the hell i was taught about. and to me its just as bad as the burny kind. it doesnt make me feel any better towards god or this religion.
 
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gad
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Thank you Gad for posting this. I have never heard this and it makes our religion so much nicer this way.


You're welcome. I'm glad it helped.
 
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gad
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That is the hell i was taught about. and to me its just as bad as the burny kind. it doesnt make me feel any better towards god or this religion.


Nobody likes to suffer, even if it's for one's benefit. But eventually we will appreciate it, just as a child who matures appreciates the parents' discipline and love.

But hopefully we won't need to suffer any more, and Moshiach will come now.
 
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killedlastyear
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Quote

Originally posted by: gad
Quote


That is the hell i was taught about. and to me its just as bad as the burny kind. it doesnt make me feel any better towards god or this religion.


Nobody likes to suffer, even if it's for one's benefit. But eventually we will appreciate it, just as a child who matures appreciates the parents' discipline and love.

But hopefully we won't need to suffer any more, and Moshiach will come now.


what happens to pple who kill themselves? they say pple who kill themselves go to hell forever. like will god just embaress them forever?
 
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frumsw
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Mitzvos are sort of "soul food". We don't understand why our soul needs it but it does in order to connect with Hashem. It also helps if we learn the deeper reason behind the mitzvos. Also, He knows exactly where we are holding right now so if we are trying, that's all He expects from us, not perfection because only He is perfect. For many people, if they get out of bed in the morning, hey, that's their mitzva for the day because that's as far as they can go at that time.


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gad
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The way I understand it, it's not that G-d embarrasses anyone, but rather that the person's soul now (after death) sees reality and truth, and automatically feels embarrassed by any shortcomings.

And as frumsw wrote, sometimes it's not the person's fault, in which case there is nothing to be embarrassed about.

However, when a soldier goes into battle, he doesn't think alot about failure. Rather he goes optimistically, confident that he will accomplish his mission. Similarly we are confident that G-d will help us, and we will accomplish our mission.

I don't remember anything about going to hell forever. There is an interesting piece that may be helpful. It's in the book "Duties of the Heart" which is a classic written hundreds of years ago. There the author compares suicide to the following. A king commands his guard to stay at a certain place. The guard decides to desert his post, and the king is quite upset and disappointed. Similary G-d sends us into this world, into a body, with a mission. Imagine how G-d feels when the person decides to desert.

Again we're not talking about someone who is mentally distressed to the point where they are not able to be in control of their faculties. But again, the proper approach is to try your best, and to be confident that you will succeed.
 
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kivunulo
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2/9/07 1:59 AM
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the zohar says the reason hashem created the world because hashem is a "rodef chesed" - "searches (runs) to bestow kindness" in order to be able to bestow kindness he needed to create creations to bestow his kindness upon them, hahsem created the world and the whole world is created for the jewish nation, every jew has a neshama, the neshama is "chelek elokai mima'al mamesh" literally translated "a real part of hashem", it belongs to be in a place where it is "nehene mizuv hashechina" - "basks and enjoys from sight of hashem", and this is the goal of every neshama to achieve, in fact the neshama comes from "tachas kisei hakovo'd" - "under the heavenly throne" but it is not happy there because it does not deserve the kindness hashem bestows on it therefore hashem who want's to bestow the best sends down the neshama on our world where it has to fight a big fight with the "yetzer horah" - "evil inclination", so when the time comes for him to go back up he will be deserving for all the good that hashem gives him, because it won a difficult battle, an hashem enjoys kivyochul when his children - us do his commandment, the human brain does not undersrtand all this fully, just like a child does not understand what a grownup understands, but this is the real truth and we have to trust in this just like a child trusts in the judgement of grownups.

now every time a person sins the neshama becomes dirty, and becomes less fit to go in the place where it is meant to be therfore after the person is niftar (dies) hashem needs to wash out the neshama so it should be able to receive all the great things it deserves beacuse in its dirty state it can not receive it, and that is what hell is for - to wash out the neshama, in that state it is the best thing for the neshama, actually the neshama chooses to suffer in order to be able to cleanse itself.

but now we should ask a question if g-d only created the world to bestow goodness on everyone then why did he create hell the answer to our question is written in a lot of seforim (siduroi shel shabbos) hashem created hell in order for a person to be afraid to sin like a father showing his son a stick even though he does not want to hit him with it he shows it to him so he will not do anything wrong - he should be afraid.

and even if a person sinned it does not mean that he will suffer because hashem created a thing called "teshuvah" you could repent on your sins and hashem forgives you with his great kindness, through this his neshama gets cleansed.

"ein hakodush boruch hu ba betrunyah im briyosuv" - "go-d does not ask the impossible"
he just wants us to try our best and ask hashem for his help

be happy that we have such a loving father in heaven who wants so much to do us good because the goodness that awaits every neshama in the world to come is four hundred times more than the suffering for a a sin, the human brain does not know and can not understand this enjoyment.

i can go on and on in this subject but i got to go now so good luck


p.s. remember one thing a human brainis like a baby's brain in the face of the greatest proffessor and much much less comapred to hashem, so even if you don't understand, if our father made it so it is surely for our best because that is his only intrest - his children.


Edited: 3/9/07 at 3:03 PM by kivunulo
 
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kivunulo
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2/14/07 12:13 AM
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the rambam writes in hilcos teshuva that everytime a person has any small discomfort on this world he should say "re'eih nu be'unyi ve'su lechol chatosai" - see my discomfort and this should atone for all my sins, by saying this a person receives his suffering by this dicomfort, rather than suffering much more in the world to come.

keep smiling


Edited: 3/9/07 at 3:03 PM by kivunulo
 
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gad
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Could you please write the chapter and sentence where the Rambam says what you quoted. I glanced quickly through but I didn't find it.

In general Rabbi Levi Yitzchok of Barditchev and many Rebbes always tried to justify the Jewish people, even if an individual did a blatant sin. They also tried to eliminate the suffering if they could. Moishe Rabbeinu also tried to help the Jewish people this way.

So although it's good to be self-critical; when it comes to another Jew it is important to be melamed zechus, to find merit and try to offer comfort and help (not to justify the suffering and say or imply that it's because of sins).

Although I know you mean well, I know that you'll understand and appreciate my point.

Also in your previous post which I can tell was organized with much effort, I would suggest that there are other approaches which entail more joy and optimism. But that can be left for another time. And as you sign off so nicely, I would also say to you "keep smiling."
 
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kivunulo
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2/14/07 7:34 PM
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thank you for correcting me, i don't know if i am right i just post what i think, if you think its not a good idea for me to post tell me, maybe ill consider stopping.
now for the rambam
sorry i thought i saw it in rambam my mistake, i cannot find the source where it says to say these exact words but i remember seeing it somewhere, meanwhile the shaarei teshuva (shar beis ois gimel) writes something similar and the peleh yoetz erech hisorerus writes that you should say "gam zu letovah"- this to is for the good.
when i find the source for the saying above i will let you know.
(actually the principle built on chazal the gemarah says yesurin is memaraik avon, the seforim
say (shaarei teshuvah chovos halvovos) only if you are mekabel beahava that is why you
have to say it).

for the second thing you wrote i would like to know what exactly is it which you called "self critical".

and what i wrote that suffering is for sins it is not from myself the gemarah says so "horoeh yesurin boin ulov yefashpeish b'masav", and hell for sure is only because of sins even if in this world there is such a thing as yesurin shel ahava even without sins but in the world to come there is no such thing as suffering without sins.
other people including me already wrote on this subject in the end of this thread http://www.frumsupport.com/Forums/messageview.cfm?catid=282&threadid=997&FTVAR_MSGDBTABLE=

and by the way you seem to think that suffering is something terrible, the gemarah eirichin (15) says that even if when you want to take out 2 coins from your pocket and three came out it is also called suffering and if you say that it should atone for your sins then it atones, hashem does not want ppl to suffer, so if ppl understand from small things that hashem is reminding him then he saves himself bigger suffering.

and also i would really like to hear the more optimistic and joyful approach you were talking about

the rest i PM'ed you

thanks again



Edited: 3/9/07 at 3:04 PM by kivunulo
 
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gad
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Let's continue by private message as you suggest.

Just to answer your points here briefly:

It's good to post here when the results are beneficial.

The thoughts in the different books are there for us to study and to be self-critical, that is, to examine ourselves and improve ourselves. But when someone is hurting, suffering, and in pain, then our role is to comfort and try to help, not to go over to them and blame their sins, which can cause added stress, anguish and mental pain; and which justifies it in the eyes of G-d, instead of asking G-d to cure the person.

And this is especially so if we realize that suffering is not always as result of our sins (see chovivei halevovos shaar habitochoin where he has a whole section about this.)

You'll note that in the gemorah you quote it says "boin ulov" that the person sees suffering coming "to him." This reinforces my point that this approach should be used for self improvement. But when you see the suffering happen to someone else G-d forbid, then a different approach is required.

As for the more optimistic and joyful approach, in a nutshell it's about serving G-d with joy and love when we appreciate how great He is, how much He loves us, and how by learning Torah and doing Mitzvos we can come closer to Him and to each other, and accomplish beautiful, meaningful and wonderful things in our world.
 
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kivunulo
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you are right i and i did not intend to blame anybody that his suffering is because of his sins.
i agree that there Is such a thing as suffering in THIS wolrd without sins, but in the world to come you only suffer for sins, that is if you did not suffer for them in this world.

i see that i did not get my message across so i will repeat myself shortly.
i was just trying to suggest for someone who is worried that he will go to hell for his sins two suggestion 1) he should do teshuvah 2) and he should say for every little thing in this world that didnt go the he wanted that it should atone for his sins, because a little suffering in this world is equal to a lot more in the world to come, if the person accepts it for atonement.

and again
keep smiling


Edited: 3/9/07 at 3:04 PM by kivunulo
 
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gad
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Have a good Shabbos.
 
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avious101
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hell is a place wich is bad but i cant be much worse than this world
 
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gad
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Things change.

Take a child for example. If that child is punished by parents (let's say for running into the street) then the child is crying and, as the expression goes, it's hell on earth. But later the child matures and realizes that the parents' love and caring is what motivated them to be strict.

Hopefully things will soon get better for you.

Have a happy and kosher Pesach.


Edited: 3/28/07 at 1:39 AM by gad
 
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seb613
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I want to start a support group in Brooklyn from religious Jews with such problems. If you are interested e-mail me at torahyid786@yahoo.com
 
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HopefulMommy
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I am very surprised by this thread. What religion are you talking about? Since when is "going to hell" a central part of Judaism? Which school did you learn this in? I'll make sure not to send my kids there.

I also have major issues in my relationship with Hashem. I think everyone does, except for perfect tzaddikim. Nevertheless, my religion is the main reason why I am still alive and trying to survive and make sense out of this life in this world. It's the only thing that gives meaning to suffering and to life in general. I don't know how people can deal with emotional problems without religion. It gives me hope and motivation to get out of this mess my emotions are in.
 
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HopefulMommy
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One thing, though, that bothers me about being frum -- if I wasn't frum, I would be a success story -- I'm living a pretty normal life despite my panic disorder, without medication. But because I'm frum, I'm a failure because I can't have a baby every couple of years .
 
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gad
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People don't see the heart. G-d sees the heart. He knows your efforts, and your limits. And He appreciates all the good things that you do.

And when other people gain sensitivity, they will also see the good in each person.

And until that day, you can feel peace of mind knowing that G-d, and we, know that you are sincerely devoted.

And in the meantime, may you soon be blessed with everything good both physically and spiritually.
 
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frumsw
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I share that same feeling. Although I am not and have not been medicated and I'm extremely functional (even successful some would say), because of my depression and other issues, I have far fewer children than other people in my community and I'm self conscious about it. The only other people around here with so few children either have fertility problems (I think some people think I have that problem) or are dysfunctional families that everybody knows and are at risk for having their children taken away because of abuse or neglect or something. Actually, there are plenty of families around like that who have twice as many kids as I do. One of the good things about getting older is that eventually my generation will stop having babies and start marrying them off and then I won't feel so odd. In the meantime, they are having twins -numbers 9 & 10 or maybe 11 &12 (happens sometimes when you are hitting 40) and I'm wondering how we landed up on such different planets when we started out in the same place sitting next to each other in high school.


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