Tuesday, June 17, 2008


My intention last night was to make it home, go to the grocery store, make dinner, do the laundry, and not turn on the TV or the computer, but to read. I wanted to read through some blog entries that A Simple Jew had sent me, in addition to all the comments and thoughts others had sent via e-mail and the comments page on my Faith post. I'd wanted to really buckle down and throw myself at some studying to get into the issue. But ... instead, the trip home lasted nearly two hours, then I ate dinner and threw on an episode of Buffy the Vampire Slayer (no laughs!) and it was all downhill from there.

I just can't get anything done sitting at my computer at work or sitting at home. I need to throw myself into the coffee/tea shop and be completely unattached (with the exception of the BlackBerry, that is) from the web in order to get anything done. It's sad, but it's true. I've essentially sat here at my desk the entire day flipping through my RSS feed and playing Scrabulous and mulling around the Web like a hungry person in a vast grocery store. You walk and walk and grab things and you never really get what you need.

At the same time, I'm reading through the bulk of comments I've gotten in the past week and I'm trying to figure out how people have come across the blog. There seem to be some Orthodox readers, and a friend told me that when she began talking about possibly becoming frum there came some regular readers on her blog, but when she finally came to the decision to not be frum those people disappeared. Then again I think perhaps my recent presence in commenting over on the Frum Satire blog probably has brought in new faces. Or maybe it's people from Twitter or elsewhere. Either way, the readership is a boon, and it's definitely encouraging me to (want to) be more active with the posting of well-thought-out content.

So for now, while I anticipate going home and eating dinner and then heading back out to the coffee shop to roll my shoulders over a table, perched over texts and printouts in hopes of analyzing faith in Judaism and perhaps what it means to the individual and whether the concept of faith in Judaism is relevant, I leave you with this:

Maimonides, perhaps one of the greatest Jewish sages, constructed the 13 Principles of Faith. With perfect repetition we recite "I believe with perfect faith that ..." for a variety of principles expressing the oneness of G-d and the truth of the prophets. I posted these principles in December of 2006, while knowing that of the 13 principles, it was No. 13 that unsettled me the most. At the time, I hadn't even been unsettled by the word "faith" in each of these statements. I didn't mention it, and thinking back, it wasn't even a question to me. The word faith merely blended in. I wonder, then, why a year and a half later I'm suddenly so very opposed to this word, faith, in the Jewish construction.