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Destinations, Dreams and Dogs - International adventure with a fast-track family (& dogs) of Old World values, adopting the Russian-Italian-American good life on the go…!

Is Rabbi Shmuley Wrong?

For those of you not in the know, Rabbi Shmuley Boteach is often pegged as a spiritual advisor to the stars, you know, those rich and famous people whose spiritual questions often stretch beyond, “If there is a God, why can’t I make ends meet?”  Frequently, these are non-Jews who feel that he’s exotic enough, or fun enough, to understand their deepest needs.  And after writing a book like “Kosher Sex”, they might not be wrong.

Let’s put it this way:  he’s the king of controversy.  Particularly with his upcoming tome on “Kosher Jesus”, he’s not breaking any new ground, but irritating enough people  to have them wanting to break his neck.  Jewish groups have been heaping curses upon him, hoping to lead to his early demise.

For what?  He said that Jesus was a Jewish rabbi who followed Jewish law (nothing new there, but riles up certain groups who wish it weren’t true), while maintaining that there was no way he could have been the Jewish Messiah (which has riled up the other side of the fence for milennia).  What makes it funny, to me, is why Jewish Orthodox organizations such as Chabad could be so up at arms over the rabbi, while many of them still assert that Rabbi Shneerson who died a few years back was the Messiah, although he probably did not fulfill one Messianic prophecy (as opposed to Jesus’ fulfillment of over 320 prophecies).


So Rabbi Shmuley angers both Jews and Christians, who probably both wish he would stick to theatrics and leave the theology for others.  Well, I for one, wish you a long life, rabbi, even though I frequently don’t agree with your conclusions.

Today is different, and I agree with you on the following.

I read your Op-ed piece in The Jerusalem Post and I felt it was very thoughtful and spiritual.  You ask the question why, in election years, candidates reduce moral issues solely to the question of abortion and gay marriage.  Your comparison and contrast commentary was worth noting.

To paraphrase the rabbi:

If many Americans say they don’t believe in abortion and fight for the rights of the unborn, where are those who will fight for the rights of the born, particularly those 70% of African-American babies who are born out of wedlock and have no paternal support, whether emotional or financial?

If we say we don’t believe in gay marriage, where are those who will encourage the 50% of  heterosexuals who will divorce… to stay married?  Why not tax-free marriage counselling and other incentives?  Aren’t those moral issues, too?

How about the many who would mock Tim Tebow’s public (gasp!) professions of faith, and yet have nothing to say about the objectification of scantily-clad women, shimmying and shaking with their pompoms on the same football field?  No outrage there?

Or what about the 80% of Americans who are churchgoers? t Who’s making 68 million pornographic search engine requests every day?  (Hopefully, the other 20%?)

These are important questions to ask, not that we need politicians to be deciding for us.  For me, there needs to be certain standards of morality and decency in our country.  (By the by, I wonder if the rabbi knows that our Congress recently voted that sodomy and bestiality among our armed forces’ ranks are no longer crimes?  Bunch of sickos.)  It’s fine with me if we legislate certain basics and yes, if our presidential candidates debate those same issues.

But as the rabbi rightly pointed out, there are lifestyle issues that are much greater than the Big Two.  Yes, he even dared to mention the holy grail of Black Friday shopping sprees and the greed of rampant consumerism, usually by those who are already up to their necks in debt, yet can’t seem to pass up a good sale.

Instead, morality should matter and be regularly discussed by those in the pulpits across America, as well as those in the pews.  It can’t all be solved by the politicians, and that’s where the rabbi and I agree.  The moral state of the union could be better.



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5 Comments : Leave a Reply

  1. avatar Winnie says:

    Preaching to the choir sister! If your gonna have moral issues in your politics make it about ALL moral issues, not just gays and abortion.

    • avatar admin says:

      I know, Winnie, I think it’s that the economy… and military operations… and natural disasters… take up a lot of their time…. If it is to be, it is up to… all of us!

  2. avatar Sybil says:

    I have felt for so many of my adult years that we as people of the world, learn and implement no moral lessons as groups of people. Individually, at times yes, but as groups or a total world population, practically nothing. Yet, there are wonderful things that go on ; great progress in the medical field, the computer and electronics world, new inventions and on and on. I have no answers but deep concerns. Those of us who are truly concern grapple with this and yet nothing seems to get better. The great unbalances remain . Is this what we will to our future generations?

    • avatar admin says:

      Good point, Sybil. Why is morality so different in terms of “the whole” rather than “the individual”? It’s something to think about… and then act.

  3. avatar SLB says:

    This was great! Really got me to thinking! I believe the moral state of the union reflects the moral state of the home. The greatest battles ever forged are fought in the houses we pass by everyday. Too many have proudly placed the white flag of surrender to “Me, Myself and I” smack-dab on their front doors. Good grief! It’s hard enough to pass people by on the street and get a “hello”, “thank you” or “have a nice day” anymore. Where are good morals? Where are good manners? Through God we have the victory. The only problemo is getting everyone on the same page and unfortunately, that’s never going to happen. However, we can do what we can within our own homes and spread the love of God whenever possible. Then good morals and good manners are sure to follow. 🙂

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