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Category Archives: Definition of Free Will

Celebrity Priests and Rabbis…..The Kim Kardashian’s of Religion

I’ve got to gripe a little here.

If you are reading my blog for the first time….I was at one time in my life an Orthodox Jew.

I respected my faith very much and I had fear that if I didn’t follow the ritualistic protocol of Judaism, I believed that I was going to be “punished” by the One Above.

I also believed that if I am going to be punished for not being a “good” Jew, then other people that are not “good” Jews will also be punished.

I have gotten older and a little more mature and I realize now that I may have been wrong about this childish view of G-d.

As an adult, I realize that we cannot tell another person what G-d wants from them, because we are not G-d and to dare insist that we are sure that another person is going to “Hell” for their deeds…..is quite presumptuous.

But……since I have come to this realization……I have a hard time with Rabbis and Priests that claim to know what G-d wants from all of us.

And, apparently they know that G-d wants the same thing from everybody…… G-d wants all of us to fear Him.

Let me tell you why I think this is blasphemous.

Note: Since I can only discuss Judaism, because I am Jewish, I have no choice but to limit my gripes to the Rabbis that do this and what kind of negative impact they have on the Jewish community as a whole.  I cannot discuss other religions, however, that does not mean that this does not occur within other religions.  I want to clearly state that I am not under the impression that Judaism is the one and only religion guilty of what I am about to rant about.

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Who Are You?

This question is so cliche – we don’t even know the meaning of this question.

A few years ago, if someone would  have asked me this question, I would have looked at them straight in the eyes, while trying to keep a straight face, and I would have responded….” I am Glinda, the good witch of the South.”

What does this question mean and if we are anyone besides who we think we are, how would we know the answer?

That is the reason why this question is actually such an important one to answer…..because most likely we are not who we think we are.

A few years ago, I would have rolled my eyes and given a sarcastic answer to this question because I would have no other answer to give.

What kind of answer am I supposed to give?……I am Shayna Abrams, a married woman with children who likes music and loves to cook…..

I now realize that we are the infinite spirit inside of us and not the our finite bodies – nor are we the finite functions of our bodies –  that have been named by the ones who conceived us.

We are not just our names.  We are not just our jobs.  We are not just our particular enjoyments.  We are not just spouses.  We are not just parents.  We are not just friends.

We are far more than all of these things together.  When we limit ourselves to something as trite as the identifications above, we limit the power of ourselves – which is our spirit.

We are limiting ourselves to a finite thing rather an infinite being.

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Does it Really Matter What the FDA Says at This Point?

My brother sent me an interesting article about a drug called Qnexa that is about to come on the market.   The company that makes it, Vivus Inc, claims that Qnexa, which combines the appetite suppressant phentermine and anti-seizure drug topiramate, helped patients lose at least 10 percent of their weight after a year of treatment.

You can read the rest of the article here: U.S. Advisers Back Experimental Obesity Pill

So here is what I have to say about this…..

If you read the article, it is basically discussing the fact that this drug has already been rejected by the FDA two years ago, but a panel of outside experts called the “US health advisors” (whoever these people are and represent) recommend approving the drug despite the many potential side effects such as heart attacks and birth defects, because there are just too many obese people and something needs to be done about it.

So, if the FDA does what it is usually does and follows the recommendations of this panel – the “US Health Advisors” (whoever these people are and represent)…this drug will be available sometime in April.

Who cares what the FDA approves and what they don’t approve anymore?  They have approved drugs that have killed many people and will continue to approve many, many more dangerous drugs…..why not approve a drug like this one?

What difference does it make?

Slap a label on the bottle listing all the possible side effects (like death) and leave it up to those who decide that it is worth the risk.

At some point, we, Americans, have to take responsibility for ourselves and our own lives and forget about what the FDA “approves” of and what they don’t “approve” of.

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Should We Continue to Pressure our Kids to go to College?

I know that many people will disagree with me on this subject…..but I think it is time to stop putting so much pressure on our kids to go to college.

Yes, I do realize that college has the potential to increase the opportunities that our children have in their life, presuming that they do well, but college also has the potential to destroy their lives.

Even CUNY colleges are going to rack up about a $30,000 bill by your kid graduates….and college tuition is not a money back guarantee.

If your kid does not find a job in their chosen career, they will be in the same position as everyone who didn’t go to college is in…….having to find any source of work that will pay the bills.

The only difference would be that they had to invest at least $30,000 dollars to find this out.

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Trust vs. Faith

I wanted to talk about this because I feel that sometimes we get confused about the difference between these two words.

You cannot have faith in something unless you trust it first.

We can learn a lot from the story about the Manna, an edible substance that God provided for the Israelites during their travels in the desert according to the Bible. (Book of Exodus)

The Israelites were instructed by Moses not to save their daily portions of Manna (except for the double portion that fell before the Sabbath) because it would rot and become inedible.

Believe it or not, despite the fact that the Israelites must have witnessed incredible miracles throughout their exile from Egypt, some of them still did not listen to Moses’ instruction and tried to save the Manna for the next day.

These Israelites clearly did not trust that the Manna was going to fall and, therefore, suffered from fear – which is lack of faith.

They feared that they would not have food the next day and they possible did what most of us nowadays do…tossed and turned all night worrying about not doing the right thing, but at the same time not trusting that there will be enough tomorrow.

If we trust in somebody (or something), we can relinquish the fear of not being able to trust and we can submit to faith.

Faith allows us to move along life without carrying the burden of fear and discontent.

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Employer and Employee vs. Master and Slave – When Is The Line Crossed?

I was watching the Real Housewives of Atlanta last night and there is some controversy over Kim Zolciak’s relationship with her “personal assistant” Sweetie.  Kim is white and Sweetie is black so it makes the whole story a little more controversial.

Kim tends to holler for Sweetie every time she needs something.  If Kim is getting sick of doing anything or needs anything thing done, you will hear her yell “Sweeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeetieeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee” from under her covers in her bedroom until Sweetie comes to her majesty’s assistance.

Now according to Sweetie, Kim is paying her to do be her “personal assistant”.  According to the other housewives, they are embarrassed by the relationship between Kim and Sweetie, because as black women they are not comfortable with the way Sweetie is being treated.

Here is a clip of a fight that ensued over the controversy:

Kim and Nene Fight on Tour Bus

This topic is something I have very strong opinions about and not everyone agrees with my opinions.

I feel that the line is crossed the minute that the employer is intentionally disrespectful to their employee.   The reason I feel this way is because everyone knows, especially our bosses, that employees need their job…and to feel comfortable enough to intentionally disrespect someone you pay money to sends a message (in my opinion) saying …. “I pay you to take my shit and if you want to keep your job, shut up and deal with it”.

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How Good This Must Have Felt

I ran into this letter written by a slave to his former master in response to a request to return to work for him….

To My Old Master

Wow……

How many of us would dream of an opportunity to be able to write a letter like that to one of our previous bosses, let alone our previous “master”.

I just want to point out one interesting thing to note.  Obviously Mr. Jourdan Anderson (the name of the former slave), despite poverty and abuse, was a man of integrity and intelligence.

In fact, it seems that he may have been even more intelligent than his very wealthy and successful “master”.

These are my favorite stories.  The stories about the quiet, unnoticed, unimportant, ignored and assumed worthless people that are brave enough, smart enough, confident enough and angry enough to stand up for themselves against their abusers with dignity…….AND still are able to get ’em where it counts – right in the gut.

Other posts you might like:

To Imitate or Initiate – That is the Questions

Inequality is Not a Racial Issue – It is a Human Issue

Paycheck or Self Respect…I’ll Take Self Respect

Status of Occupy Wallstreet

Being Richer Does Not Mean That You Are Smarter

Why is Life Unfair?

Life is full of controversy so here is a thought to live by:
Why is life unfair?
Because there’s never going to be a system that is fair to everyone.
Shannon Miller
 

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