Mi Yodeya is a question and answer site for those who base their lives on Jewish law and tradition and anyone interested in learning more. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

If the purpose that we ascribe as the reason for creation (as stated in the Ramchal's Derech Hashem, Klach Pischei Chochma and other works) is for God to bestow his goodness unto creation (bearing in mind that this does not refer to the actual will of God, but rather an approximation based on our limited understanding) why are there so few human beings around for him to do this to?

Shouldn't an infinite God want to bestow as much good as possible and thus require as many people (or living things - if we assume they also experience that goodness) as possible?

share|improve this question
Wouldn't you need an infinite number of people to satisfy that goal? – Monica Cellio Dec 14 '12 at 16:35
@MonicaCellio or, you would need to explain the importance of having a finite number of people instead ;) – user2110 Dec 14 '12 at 16:39
I'd have to a little research to back this up with sources, but my understanding is that, in reality, we literally cannot speak of God's motivations. In fact, the entire idea of a motivation or purpose cannot actually be applied to God. Thus, when we speak of the "purpose of Creation" we are, by definition, speaking of something on a level below God Himself - i.e. something that is itself part of creation and therefore limited. – LazerA Dec 14 '12 at 17:04
Another thing that occurred to me. Olam haba, which is the primary period in which God will bestow His goodness upon His creations is eternal (i.e. infinite). If the recipients exist for all infinity, isn't that effectively the same as an infinite number of recipients? Especially as God exists outside of time, which means that as long as there is at least one recipient in Olam Haba, then, from God's "perspective", He can bestow His infinite goodness on an infinitely large recipient. – LazerA Dec 14 '12 at 17:20
Who said there are only a finite number of people? God can see the future just as well as the present. – msh210 Dec 14 '12 at 19:51

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.