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Thoughts & Replies
- Annotated Constitution
"though I bestow all my goods to feed the poor, and though I give my body to be burned, and have not charity, it profiteth me nothing. Charity suffereth long, and is kind; charity envieth not; charity vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up, Doth not behave itself unseemly, seeketh not its own, is not easily provoked, thinketh no evil; Rejoiceth not in iniquity, but rejoiceth in the truth"
"if by supporting the rights of mankind... I shall contribute to save from the agonies of death one unfortunate victim of tyranny, or of ignorance, equally fatal, his blessing and tears of transport will be a sufficient consolation to me for the contempt of all mankind."-Marchese di Beccaria
"Raise your words, not voice. It is rain that grows flowers, not thunder."
“Though religion may be that which determines the goal, it has, nevertheless, learned from science, in the broadest sense, what means will contribute to the attainment of the goals it has set up. But science can only be created by those who are thoroughly imbued with the aspiration toward truth and understanding. This source of feeling, however, springs from the sphere of religion. To this there also belongs the faith in the possibility that the regulations valid for the world of existence are rational, that is, comprehensible to reason. I cannot conceive of a genuine scientist without that profound faith. The situation may be expressed by an image: science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind.”
A Symposium, published by the Conference on Science, Philosophy and Religion in Their Relation to the Democratic Way of Life, New York, 1941
“I HAD rather believe all the fables in the Legend, and the Talmud, and the Alcoran, than that this universal frame is without a mind. And therefore, God never wrought miracle, to convince atheism, because his ordinary works convince it. It is true, that a little philosophy inclineth man’s mind to atheism; but depth in philosophy bringeth men’s minds about to religion. For while the mind of man looketh upon second causes scattered, it may sometimes rest in them, and go no further; but when it beholdeth the chain of them, confederate and linked together, it must needs fly to Providence and Deity. Nay, even that school which is most accused of atheism doth most demonstrate religion; that is, the school of Leucippus and Democritus and Epicurus.”
The U.S. Constitution Before and After Charles Darwin
Most people would not consider Charles Darwin to be someone important in order to understand the U.S. Constitution. Most people would consider the writings of men like John Locke, Blackstone and James Madison as important in order to understand the Constitution. Obviously, these men had a great influence on the Constitution. But there is a sense in which Charles Darwin is more important than all of them. Charles Darwin, the author of The Origin of Species (1859) had a profound impact on the U.S. Constitution. In fact, a case could be made that he has had a greater or equal impact on the Constitution than the delegates at the constitutional convention! The reason is simple. Charles Darwin changed the way we see the Constitution. For better or for worse, the way many Americans see the Constitution today is very different from the time before Darwin. The dominant legal philosophy in the United States today is secularism. The U.S. Constitution is seen today as a “secular” document. This is what Charles Darwin gave us. Charles Darwin gave us secularism. Secularism as a philosophy is based on the principle that there is an alternative explanation for the existence of the Universe. Secularists believe that only scientific evolution is valid. They are not atheists as often claimed. Many secularists believe in God. However, secularists believe that in terms of the government, it does not matter whether God exists or not. The impact of secularism on the Constitution was revolutionary. Secularists read the Constitution in a way that is totally foreign to its framers. In a nutshell, secularists think that religion was not important to the framers of the Constitution. As one of their writers said concerning the majority of the delegates at Philadelphia: “… most were men who could take their religion or leave it alone.” Note 1.
The Constitution Before Darwin To the framers of the Constitution,
the idea of having a government not based on God would have been unthinkable. It is important to remember that when the Constitution was written, the only possible explanation for the existence of the Universe was special creation. Therefore, all of the delegates at the Philadelphia convention were creationist. This is the reason the framers did not create a “secular” state in the modern sense of the term. Indeed, the concept of “secularism” as it is used today didn’t even exist in 1787. It is largely a twentieth century concept. Since the framers of our Constitution predated Darwin and the theory of evolution, the desire to have a “secular” state would have made as much sense to them as Egyptian hieroglyphics. It is only with the advent of Darwin and an alternative explanation for the existence of the Universe that a secular state becomes desirable. There were atheists in 1787 to be sure but they lacked a coherent scientific explanation for the existence of the Universe. At the same time, the framers of our Constitution did not want America to become a theocracy. They did not believe in a theocratic state. The framers of our Constitution did not want clergymen to pick the Presidents and set government policy. However, this is not to say that they saw no role for religion in government. The framers most certainly did believe that religion and religious values should influence the government and its policies. George Washington’s first Proclamation as President made this abundantly clear. On the day that Congress finished its work on the First Amendment, it called on President George Washington to issue a Proclamation to the people of the United States to thank God for the freedoms we enjoy. A week and a day later the President’s opening paragraph in his Proclamation said: “Whereas it is the duty of all nations to acknowledge the providence of Almighty God, to obey His will, to be grateful for His benefits, and humbly to implore His protection and favor …” Note 2. The words “to obey His will” are fatal to any suggestion that George Washington and the framers of our Constitution believed in “secularism.” In America, religious values influence government policy through the vote of the people.
“The real mistake of the Muslims is something much more modern in its application than any particular passing persecution of Christians as such. It lay in the very fact that they did think they had a simpler and saner sort of Christianity, as do many modern Christians. They thought it could be made universal merely by being made uninteresting. Now a man preaching what he thinks is a platitude is far more intolerant than a man preaching what he admits is a paradox. It was exactly because it seemed self-evident, to Muslims as to Bolshevists, that their simple creed was suited to everybody, that they wished in that particular sweeping fashion to impose it on everybody.”
“Remember what we said on 9-11? They will not change us. Well I’m afraid they already have. They’ve changed our country, but our country is not a piece of paper, our country is not a collection of laws, and it is certainly not parties or politicians. It is not our money, it is not our stuff, it is us. To [change] America they must fundamentally change us. They are indoctrinating our children, they are fining us, they are making it illegal to live your life the way you always have lived your life. They’re making it illegal to have your kids help you on your own family farm. They are doing everything they can to fundamentally transform.
Read “Man’s Search for Meaning” by Viktor Frankl”
Glenn Beck, Radio H1, 4-17-13
Psychiatrist Viktor Frankl’s memoir has riveted generations of readers with its descriptions of life in Nazi death camps and its lessons for spiritual survival. Between 1942 and 1945 Frankl labored in four different camps, including Auschwitz, while his parents, brother, and pregnant wife perished. Based on his own experience and the experiences of those he treated in his practice, Frankl argues that we cannot avoid suffering but we can choose how to cope with it, find meaning in it, and move forward with renewed purpose. Frankl’s theory—known as logotherapy, from the Greek word logos (“meaning”)—holds that our primary drive in life is not pleasure, as Freud maintained, but the discovery and pursuit of what we personally find meaningful. -Amazon
“There is not a shadow of right in the general government to intermeddle with religion. Its least interference with it would be a most flagrant usurpation. I can appeal to my uniform conduct on this subject, that I have warmly supported religious freedom.”
– James Madison, the Virginia Ratifying convention.
“Wherever politics tries to be redemptive, it is promising too much. Where it wishes to do the work of God, it becomes not divine, but demonic.”
And on the 8th day, God looked down on his planned paradise and said, “I need a caretaker.” So God made a farmer.
God said, “I need somebody willing to get up before dawn, milk cows, work all day in the fields, milk cows again, eat supper and then go to town and stay past midnight at a meeting of the school board.” So God made a farmer.
"I need somebody with arms strong enough to rustle a calf and yet gentle enough to deliver his own grandchild. Somebody to call hogs, tame cantankerous machinery, come home hungry, have to wait lunch until his wife’s done feeding visiting ladies and tell the ladies to be sure and come back real soon — and mean it." So God made a farmer.
God said, “I need somebody willing to sit up all night with a newborn colt. And watch it die. Then dry his eyes and say, ‘Maybe next year.’ I need somebody who can shape an ax handle from a persimmon sprout, shoe a horse with a hunk of car tire, who can make harness out of haywire, feed sacks and shoe scraps. And who, planting time and harvest season, will finish his forty-hour week by Tuesday noon, then, pain’n from ‘tractor back,’ put in another seventy-two hours.” So God made a farmer.
God had to have somebody willing to ride the ruts at double speed to get the hay in ahead of the rain clouds and yet stop in mid-field and race to help when he sees the first smoke from a neighbor’s place. So God made a farmer.
God said, “I need somebody strong enough to clear trees and heave bails, yet gentle enough to tame lambs and wean pigs and tend the pink-combed pullets, who will stop his mower for an hour to splint the broken leg of a meadow lark. It had to be somebody who’d plow deep and straight and not cut corners. Somebody to seed, weed, feed, breed and rake and disc and plow and plant and tie the fleece and strain the milk and replenish the self-feeder and finish a hard week’s work with a five-mile drive to church.
"Somebody who’d bale a family together with the soft strong bonds of sharing, who would laugh and then sigh, and then reply, with smiling eyes, when his son says he wants to spend his life ‘doing what dad does.’" So God made a farmer.
There is an interesting phrase used in Israel which is recited when one unexpectedly encounters a person for the second time within a short period: pa’am shlisheet, glida (“third time, ice cream”). This is commonly understood to mean: If we…
Actually, it’s a blessing thanking G-d for creating the human body in His great wisdom and how it functions properly but ok.
we love our biology. Don’t even man.
What is that bull****. It doesn’t thank G-d for what the image states; it acknowledge that G-d created our bodies in a way that is even one small problem were to arise, it could kill us. It also acknowledges that G-d sustains us.
That is why people sometimes also say it after an operation.
And I wouldn’t call it a prayer, it’s a brocho - a blessing.
Finally, this appears somewhat subtly anti-Semitic. Twisting the truth [even when your source doesn’t say what you have] to make Orthodox Jews appear in a negative light.
We acknowledge G-d’s presence and support in all aspects of our lives, as well as the authority G-d has over us. I think did-you-kno needs to revise that little poster and put it in a more respectful frame.
Here’s the prayer in English, and a link to information about it. It is from a children’s site but so what? The information is valid.
“Blessed are You, Hashem, our G-d, King of the universe, Who formed man with wisdom and created within him many openings and many hollows (cavities). It is obvious and known before Your Throne of Glory that if but one of them were to be ruptured or if one of them were to be blocked it would be impossible to survive and to stand before You (even for a short period of time). Blessed are You, Hashem, Who heals all flesh and acts wonderously.”
Tell me this isn’t beautiful.
“Religion, morality, and knowledge, being necessary to good government and the happiness of mankind, schools and the means of education shall forever be encouraged. The utmost good faith shall always be observed towards the Indians; their lands and property shall never be taken from them without their consent; and, in their property, rights, and liberty, they shall never be invaded or disturbed, unless in just and lawful wars authorized by Congress; but laws founded in justice and humanity, shall from time to time be made for preventing wrongs being done to them, and for preserving peace and friendship with them.”