Search our Archives:
» Opinion & Society
Living in a World that Does Not Make Sense
By Larry Fine
Have you ever sat in a forest by yourself and admired the beauty of nature? Have you ever allowed your mind freedom to ponder and question the purpose of life? What if a person did not have to worry about making a living, about raising children, dealing with people problems or any time oriented tasks and allowed his/her mind to wander and wonder about the creation and the purpose, if any, of it, what would it think?
Life, at least as we know it, does not allow time us much, if any, time for speculative thought about why we exist and why the world exists. Most people are far too busy working hard to earn a living and then derive some enjoyment from their labors by buying the latest gadget or seeing the latest video to contemplate on the obvious mysteries of life. We have become so programmed that we find it difficult to take lone walks in the woods, or even parks, to observe for hours that which nature has given us. When we have ‘extra time’, meaning time when we are not working or shopping, we seek a form of entertainment.
Entertainment is an very interesting word. Generally we use it to mean movies, coffee shops, watching the television or videos or meeting friends for a good time. But entertain also means to occupy one’s mind with something; to prevent the mind from being in a mental vacuum.
In its nature, the mind continually ponders, thinking about that which it finds interesting or important.
What would a mind think about if there was no pressing problems, neither money nor resolving personality problems, nor survival problems? What would the mind think about when there was no pressing or even distant problem to consider?
Imagine yourself being in a pleasant natural environment like a forest, surrounded by beautiful tall trees, wild flowers and thorns, imagine yourself walking down a very narrow path on the side of a mountain, a path that man did not create, rather the deer made as they crossed the slope. Imagine sitting down on a large rock beneath a shady tree and enjoying the magnificent view of mile of nature's undisturbed hill and mountains and lakes.
You would be consumed with the beauty of nature, its peacefulness, its awesomeness. Resting in the shade of a few trees you could begin to marvel at the sheer beauty of the creation. Here far from the city with its multitude of man made marvels, the concrete, steel and electrified world, you would see that there is a simple beauty that transcends time and space. Birds soaring overhead in the gentle warm breeze catch a wind and seem to float in the sky without moving their wings. You ponder on how did birds get to do such a beautiful thing like flying?
The sheer tranquility and beauty of nature brings you back to contemplate the creation. Could such beauty and balance just happen or was it divinely directed. If we were to camp out, being far removed from the lights of the highways and cities, we would have a most beautiful view of a majestic summer sky alight with thousand, perhaps millions, of stars so far away that we can not even imagine, yet their light reaches us here on earth. How did this all come to be? Was it a ‘big bang’ and if there was, what caused this big bang? There must have been something there to explode, there must have been some forces that existed before the ‘big bang’. How did they get there? Who put these primordial forces and ephemeral matter into the universe that they should somehow combine or explode or what ever to create a unfathomably large universe?
Like most people of some thinking intellect, we would conclude that indeed there is a prime force that must have created the force that created the ‘big bang’. What could that prime force be? We probably be forced to admit that is what we call G-d. He existed before the universe and He will exist after the universe disappears into nothingness.
If we contemplated long enough, we might be forced to admit that the universe exists only because G-d wills it. If He retracted His will that the world should exist with all of its trappings, then it would disappear like the reality of a fleeting dream disappears when we wake up in the morning.
But, alas my dear friend, there are only too few of us who are willing to open their minds' eyes to the truth of nature’s reality. Perhaps before the industrial revolution when most men were farmers or living in small towns, they did not have such all pervading entertainments that closed their minds from contemplation on the creation; perhaps that was why earlier man had a much stronger belief in G-d.
We see that today’s society is so involved with high tech gadgets, communications, entertainment, and an assortment of other diversions, and perhaps that is the reason that they lack the ability to contemplate on the creation and the Creator. But you and I, are fortune, we have taken the time to realize that there is a creator and now we must understand the reason for life.
from the June 2011 Edition of the Jewish Magazine
Please let us know if you see something unsavory on the Google Ads and we will have them removed. Email us with the offensive URL (www.something.com)