Questions regarding our understanding of God, such as it is. NOT for every question about Jewish beliefs.

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Absolute unity and singularity of God

What does Judaism believe regarding the nature of God? Is He a single being or multiple being as believed in most Christian denomination? What is this "Absolute unity and singularity of God" means ...
6
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6answers
187 views

Books on the Existence of G-d?

I was wondering if anyone would be able to recommend to me books from a Jewish perspective on the existence of G-d. Something along the lines of proving G-d's existence. I would prefer an evidentiary ...
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1answer
85 views

How does Judaism reconcile God cannot be seen/incarnate/etc. with Pilar of Fire story? [duplicate]

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pillar_of_Fire_%28theophany%29 Exodus 13:21-22. By day the Lord went ahead of them in a pillar of cloud to guide them on their way and by night in a pillar of fire ...
6
votes
1answer
294 views

Why does God tolerate demons? What is their purpose?

The Bavli records in many places the existence of demons, and answers to this question cite rishonim and acharonim who take this seriously. Pesachim 112b relates a story in which demons are ...
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1answer
85 views

Who is Azazel? It's the guy that got one of the 2 goat on certain day. What do we know more about that being?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scapegoat Is it a demon? Evil being? And Aaron shall cast lots over the two goats, one lot for the Lord and the other lot for Azazel."1 Footnote [1] 16:8 The ...
3
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1answer
101 views

Is Sabellianism avodah zarah (idolatry)?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sabellianism They do not believe that God is three in one. They believes that God, being omnipotent, can appear to humans in many forms, including becoming human like ...
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1answer
108 views

Why the Lord didn't simply claim that He is God of all in the Torah?

I am the Lord, your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage. You shall have no other gods before me. You shall not make for yourselves an idol, nor any image ...
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3answers
110 views

Does God have complete knowledge of future?

This question Did God know the holy place right away during the exodus? ask around the idea that G-d would choose His holy places during exodus time. However, if he knows the future, he couldn't ...
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3answers
103 views

Did God know the holy place right away during the exodus?

Around the time of the exodus, the Torah says (Deut. 12:11, in Rabbi Kaplan's translation): there will be a site that God will choose as the place dedicated to His name. It is there that you ...
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2answers
125 views

HaGadol HaGibor veHaNora

In the beginning of the amida prayer, God is ascribed these three titles: HaGadol HaGibor veHaNora. (the source is from the torah) What does each one mean and how are they different?
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1answer
96 views

Which contemplations about God are not allowed?

which contemplations about God are not allowed? I am not asking on kabalist knowledge, but rather on simple layman type of contemplations, such as contemplating the "infinite" aspect of God.
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3answers
122 views

How can one give HaShem “Nahhat Ruahh”?

At the end of מוסף לשבת in דרכי אבות השלם (p. 375), a quotation is written in the name of רבי יהודה: אמר רבי יהודה: אשרי מי שעמלו בתורה ועושה נחת רוח ליוצרו Rabbi Yohhanan makes a similar ...
13
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6answers
293 views

Hashem studies Torah?

The Gemara in Avodah Zarah 3b lays out the 12-hour schedule of Hashem's day. I realize that any kind of description of Hashem in human terms is allegorical as Hashem is not a human bounded by time and ...
4
votes
1answer
122 views

How long does it take to become a kofer?

If a person for whatever reason momentarily has a thought which denies God, but then afterwards reaffirms his belief in Hashem, is that an act of kefira? Does a momentary lapse in belief constitute a ...
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3answers
224 views

If God has no body, then how does He act in the world?

The Rambam in beginning of Hilchos Deos asserts that God has no body - physical or otherwise. Hence, God is totally intangible. If so, how can the untangible affect anything in this world? If He has ...
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3answers
157 views

Why do we pray?

Say you have a very good king--he is very nice to his servants and makes the country prosperous and peaceful for everyone. Wouldn't he find it annoying if one of his servants praised him daily, three ...
10
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2answers
336 views

“God is Fire”: Trying to Source an Analogy for Prayer

I remember reading once a very clever analogy, which I was sure that I had found in the writings of Yeshayahu Leibowitz (who sourced it, from memory, in the writings of the Rav, R' Yosef Ber ...
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2answers
298 views

Is believing that God, Israel, and Torah are one Avodah Zarah?

The Zohar said that God, Israel, and Torah are one. I thought Judaism is strictly monotheistic. When Jesus said, "I and the father is one", he was being a heretic. So how come the Zohar includes even ...
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0answers
66 views

How do you know Judaism is true? [duplicate]

there are many religions out there, each with its own framework of beliefs/premises about God (or something else.) How do you know the Jewish perspective is the correct one?
8
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4answers
268 views

If Hashem doesn't change, how does prayer work?

If Hashem is perfect and unchanging, how can we pray to Him to have mercy on us? Doesn't that imply a change? I've heard it implied that the way this works is that the prayer itself has the effect ...
4
votes
4answers
387 views

How do we know that God does not take human form?

Christianity believes that God takes human shape in the form of Jesus, and comes down to earth as a man. Of course, Jews do not believe that God ever takes the shape of a human, but how do we know ...
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0answers
65 views

Significance of man relative to God

God is totally infinite in space/time and beyond, all-powerful, all-knowing, all-everything. Compared to God, man, the universe, and everything in it - everything is completely insignificant. If so, ...
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1answer
113 views

Is it possible for God to have rejected us, even in theory?

The very last pasuk in Eicha says "כִּי אִם-מָאֹס מְאַסְתָּנוּ, קָצַפְתָּ עָלֵינוּ עַד-מְאֹד.". The translation from the Atrscroll reads something like "For even if you had rejected us, you have been ...
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3answers
270 views

Why did God reveal himself only before there were recording devices?

Inspired by this: For most of what's written in Tanakh, the only evidence that we have of its truth is Tanakh itself. Since many people are skeptical of a book with no independent sources backing up ...
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4answers
291 views

What if someone is unable to believe in God?

Suppose someone really truly wants to believe in Hashem, but is simply unable to. Even after much trying and learning Torah, he still is simply unable to believe in God. Would that person be ...
2
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3answers
200 views

Why is Avraham's monotheism not mentioned in the torah?

One of the more famous achievements of Avraham was his discovery in a single God. However there is no mention of this accomplishment anywhere in the Torah. In fact there is no conclusive proof that he ...
4
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2answers
336 views

What God must gentiles believe in?

In the Rambam's Mishne Tora, the end of chapter 8 of M'lachim reads: Any [gentile] who accepts seven commands and is careful to fulfill them is among the pious of the nations of the world and has ...
2
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2answers
120 views

Is idolatrous belief forbidden for Jews, or is it just practice?

Suppose a Jew believes that there are multiple gods, but he does not worship them in any way. Is this a violation of the prohibition against idolatry for Jews? We see from this answer that similar ...
5
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1answer
170 views

What is the Shekhina?

To what are people referring when they talk about the Shekhina? Is it a form of God? A part of God? An attribute of God? Perhaps it is something else entirely? Also, what is the etymology of the ...
4
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1answer
101 views

Is idolatrous belief forbidden for gentiles, or is it just practice?

Suppose a non-Jew believes that there are multiple gods, but he does not worship them in any way. Is this a violation of the prohibition against idolatry for gentiles?
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0answers
38 views

Why did God create outer space? [duplicate]

Everything God does has a reason. He created the world for us to serve him. How does most of outer space help us serve God. Or just plainly why was space created?
5
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1answer
111 views

What about the Kohen?

It is a given that the Kohen blesses the people, but who blesses the Kohen? Is the Kohen excluded from the Brakha or is he included in the one he makes on the kehillah's behalf?
4
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2answers
114 views

Did HaShem “regret” creating someone/something

I heard once that it says somewhere in Chazal that there were certain things or people that HaShem "regretted" (had "charatah") in creating. Although I don't remember which examples were given or if a ...
1
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1answer
137 views

Infinite Chain of Cause/Effects

In the Shaar Yichud of Chovos Halevavos, one of the premises for proving that God exists is that there cannot be an infinite chain of cause/effect hence there must be one Cause which had no previous ...
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6answers
430 views

Why is God so hidden from us

Why did God institute a natural order so that His presence would be hidden. I know so many people who are hopelessly convinced of the scientific perspective that the world is basically a machine ...
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2answers
256 views

Better for Man to Not have Been Created

The Talmud in Eruvin 13b concludes that it were better for a man not to have been created than to have been created. How can we understand this given that God is absolutely benevolent. Wouldn't it ...
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5answers
399 views

Is God active or passive?

This is bothering me a lot. Is God active (he changes things, tunes a little when it goes wrong) or he is passive or even he "passed away" when creating this Universe, meaning we are made from God ...
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6answers
472 views

Can God destroy Himself?

I was thinking about it lately. If God can do everything, can He destroy Himself? Is there something about this possibility in any of the holy books?
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4answers
353 views

Seeking Clear Definition of God in Judaism as Presented in Tanakh [closed]

I am curious to know if/how God is crisply defined in the Torah: What is God and what is God not? For example, here is what can be considered a crisp definition of God in the Quran (necessary ...
2
votes
2answers
248 views

Why does God care about our service?

The Rambam in yesode hatorah says that God has no emotions. He does not change, he does not get angry nor have joy. Everything you see in tanach is just so that we can understand. The commentary ...
3
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3answers
229 views

Does God benefit from our keeping of the Mitzvos?

Does Hashem benefit from mankind doing the commandments of the Torah?
3
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4answers
256 views

Did Moshe Rabbeinu See God?

Did Moshe Rabbeinu see God? Doesn't Maimonides assert that all references to the physicality of God are metaphorical? If so, how did Moses see God?
4
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0answers
126 views

Writing HaShem's actual name in English

Is it permissible to write out HaShem's actual name (the "Tetragrammaton") in English (or any other, non-Semitic, language)? Does it make a difference how you spell it, ie., whether you write it in ...
4
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2answers
296 views

Am I yotzei in my davening if I believe that God communicated with Mohammad?

I have been reading through the various questions about Islam and its relationship to Judaism, and about the Rambam's view that Islam is a monotheistic religion and not idolatry and I am wondering: If ...
1
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1answer
131 views

May one learn from a heretic?

The Rambam writes in his introduction to Shemona Perakim: "kabel ha-emet mimi she-amerah - accept the truth from whoever speaks it". Furthermore, the gemarah Chagigah 15b indicates that Rebbi Meir ...
3
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5answers
488 views

Does Judaism recognize other religions?

Does Judaism acknowledge that there are some other religions that come from G-d? If yes, how? Which religions are that? Please give me some examples. And what are the reference for this claim?
3
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0answers
60 views

אלקים בגימטריא הטבע and not טבע?

There's a oft quoted saying that "אלקים בגימטריא הטבע." Why is it הטבע and not טבע? Isn't it "cheating" to add the extra "ה"?
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0answers
36 views

Where is G-d according to Judaism? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Hashem is here and there and everywhere? Sometimes to make the idea controversial, atheists depict G-d as a humanly being residing in the space. Then compare this to ...
2
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4answers
270 views

How can we know God?

How can we know God? Isn't God unknowable? We learn and study and follow God's commands and pray, but how do we know God (as opposed to what God wants)? What is a true way to know GOD better? ...
3
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0answers
114 views

Why are there only a finite number of people?

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 ...