Concept of the Transcendent , the Human Person and Social Reponsibility Essay
Good morning ladies and gentlemen, today I am going to be talking to you about Judaism and the agnostic. I will be comparing and delivering insights to the concept of the transcendent, the human person and the social responsibility. Religion is a social conduct based on belief. Non-religious groups and thoughts are also social groups and conducts based on a belief. Rational thought, acceptance of scientific knowledge and a sense of right and wrong are common themes as to whether the individual or the society are based on religious or non-religious concepts.
The concept of the transcendent: Religious people have a belief in some divine or transcendent concept. Generally this can be called god but there are many people with religion or transcendent worldviews with a sense of the spiritual. Jews belief god is a transcendent, immanent and creator. Jewish people firmly belive that god transcends human experience or form. God is to be treated with great deference and respect by the jews. Many jewish people consider the name of god to be too holy to mention except when addressing prayer.
The word agnostic comes from the Greek a-gnostos and it means ‘without knowledge’ so an agnostic person does not have enough knowledge to accept weather god exists or not. Agnostics can be divided into two groups. One group is uninterested in god or religion. It does not play a huge role to their daily lives and while they acknowledge the place of religion in society the fundermental beliefs of that religion play have a huge influence on their lives. These people may describe their beliefs as “don’t know , don’t care”. The second group contains people who are actively searching for some meaning outside their own existence.
Weather because of expectation of proof or religious experience which has not yet occurred to their satisfaction, these people place themselves in the unconvinced category. The human person Jewish people acknowledge human importance as some part of god. Judaism provides a purpose, a sense of meaning and identify for its followers while providing possible answers to the universal questions of life. These include questions such as what happens when we die. Jewish believe that death is the doorway to the next life. Eventually there will be a resurrection of the body when the body and spirit will be reunited.
The rewards of a good life are open to all- Jew or non Jew . Agnostics are not sure if god exists or if there is a transcendent realm , they are equally unsure as to weather humans were created by god and will experience an afterlife. Judaism has possible answers for evil and suffering explaining that Evil and suffering are the result of the failure to live the covenant fully. Suffering is not useless but is both redemptive and transformative. Jews recognise their role in society allows them to accept suffering for the transformation of the whole of society.
For agnostics evil and suffering may be the on reason they are unsure as to weather there is a god as god seems to be unable or unwilling to prevent the vast amount of evil and suffering in the world. According to the Hebrew scriptures, the bond of friendship or communication between god and his people was broken in what is called “the fall” where adam and eve disobeyed god. In response to this schism god made a number of covenants and agreements witht the jews. God supplied human beings with the 10 commandments . For jewish people , the scriptures provide a guide book of life.
Agnostics are likely to be suspicious of teachings that claim that all people are born in great debt to an unseen god and they have to follow a certain teaching , belief or set of rules to “get right with god” Social responsibility Religious people have a responsibility to support society because the inhabitants of that society were created by god and god has given various rules and commandments to support the rest of creation. Non religious people want to look after society because that gives the best opportunities for human life and fulfillment . Social responsibility is an essential part of Judaism.
The words of Micah , a prophet from the Hebrew bible, give powerful testimony to thisThe first four commandments refer to peoples obligations to god and the other six refer to peoples obligations to others. As well as caring for their own lives Jewish people are obligated to care for the unprivileged, the captive, the poor. Reation is good , put here for humanity’s use and benefit. Jewish people have strong attitudes to welfare and charity as gods will is that the community should support itself and individuals. In living life Jews are urged to live every day to the fullest.
Every year on Yom kipper , the day of atonement a passage from the bible is read out in the synagogue. It reminds the faithful of their obligations “loose chains of injustice” “set the oppresses free” “share food with the poor” “provide the poor wanderers with shelter” and other socially responsible acts. Likewise agnostic people have a social responsibility very similar to religious people although they do not have a god to guide them as to what to do. Although agnostics do not have a god adice them to protect and care for the world Agnostics are aware of the world problems such as the environment and accept they are part of it.
As people agnostics deplete the resources of the environment. Naturally this has a social aspect as well , as all people including those in less wealthy countries should have equal access to earths responsibilities. Judaism and Agnostics people are different in many ways regarding their beliefs , how their beliefs effect them and their responsibilities although they both perspectives have one thing in common , they both have their reasons and opinion on their belief.
Clark, H (2009) Studies of religion HSC Australia Science Press