Conservative."We were born believing," wrote Ralph Waldo Emerson. "A man bears beliefs as a tree bears apples." Does this mean we are hard-wired to believe in God? Or is belief in God a result of humanity's experiences in this world? I don't have answers, but I do believe Emerson understood a universal truth: Faith seems to be innate.
In a recent Gallup Poll Gallup Poll
a sampling of the views of a representative cross section of the population, usually used to forecast voting [after G H Gallup, statistician]
Gallup poll n → , nine out of ten Americans said they believe in God. They are in good company. Throughout history; regardless of nationality or culture, people have expressed faith in some kind of deity or greater power in a variety of ways. Why do people believe in God? What motivates people today to embrace a religious tradition? I suggest several answers; there are, of course, many more.
First, the world we live in is awesome in many ways. Religious tradition gives us language for expressing gratitude and appreciation. Second, faith in God can give comfort, meaning, stability and purpose to our lives as we confront the bewildering be·wil·der
tr.v. be·wil·dered, be·wil·der·ing, be·wil·ders
1. To confuse or befuddle, especially with numerous conflicting situations, objects, or statements. See Synonyms at puzzle.
2. circumstances we will all encounter. Finally, throughout history, groups of people have sought to create a community with a shared purpose and vision. Faith in God can lead to religious observance, which in turn provides a path for connecting with that larger community.
Rabbi rabbi [Heb.,=my master; my teacher], the title of a Jewish spiritual leader. The role of the rabbi has undergone a number of transformations. In the Talmudic period, rabbis were primarily teachers and interpreters of the Torah. Amy Wallk Katz
Temple Beth El