Saturday, June 30, 2007

The Talking Donkey

A memory

Once, at Templars, we had a Yom Iyun or were on a Shabbaton/Retreat. There, we were forced to attend mandatory lectures that would "strengthen our emunah" and "help us with our bitachon." We were rotating classrooms; each Rabbi or teacher had a limited amount of time to speak to us, and then we would move on to the next station.

In one classroom, the Rabbi was supposedly demonstrating the benefits of Judaism over any other religion. The discussion, of course, descended into chaos.

"Jesus," one girl sneered. "I mean, who would believe in that? That some random guy died and then was resurrected in front of like, eleven people? We got the Torah in front of 600,000!" She looks very pleased with herself.

"Yeah, and I heard that Mohmammed got the Koran by riding on a flying donkey," one girl said disgustedly, amazed by the poor idiots who would believe anything.

Unable to restrain myself, I angrily thrust my hand in the air and not waiting to be called on, stated, "Yes, and we believe in a talking donkey. A talking donkey that sees angels. How exactly," and here my voice was poisonous, "is that better?"

That shut them all up for a minute.

It was beautiful.


Anonymous said...

Miss ya everyone!

Ezzie said...

LOL. Yeah, I was having fun with some of that today with my friend during leining. Ah well. (Re: what the donkey 'saw', Ramban vs. Rashi. I took the Ramban more, he took Rashi. I hear both though.)

Tobie said...

lol. I loved Templar's demonstrations of Judaism's superiority- there were a lot that were much better than contempt for flying donkeys. It was always like, 'wow, you managed to convince a group of uncritical 15 year olds that the religion in which they were brought up is the right one. we're all very impressed.'

The only problem with them, really, was that I always walked out with my faith shaken... I mean, if that's the best we can do...

Chana said...


but of course it's not the best anyone can do. it's a particular approach which in my opinion absolutely shouldn't be utilized in high school, because it insults the intelligence of a high-schooler.

(hey, tobie, did you ever get told that you are "different" and somehow superior which is why you're not a fan of these methods?)

Charlie Hall said...

We shouldn't denigrate other religions. Ours isn't any more or less provable empirically than theirs.

Chana said...

Absolutely, Charlie!

And if you are going to discuss/ do a study in comparative religions, you ought to be versed in the texts- have studied the New Testament and Koran- and do so logically.

Not by making idiotic statements and pretending they have some kind of meaning.

Holy Hyrax said...

How, and why did you stay religious Chana?

Scraps said...

Oysh...some people. [shakes head]

This is why I want to be a teacher, because the state of Jewish education seriously worries me...