Showing posts with label Questioning. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Questioning. Show all posts

August 4, 2019

Open Your Eyes

Please see my new article in The Times of Israel called, "Open Your Eyes to Hashem."


G-d has a plan and a reason for everything–not only for them, but for all of us. We are all on a journey, and even if we don’t always readily see G-d, it’s part of our core faith that He is always there, He is guiding us, and that everything is for the best. Yet despite our best efforts to have faith, at times, we may feel that we don’t know what we’re doing here–why we’re at this place, at this time, or even how we got here–we may actually feel a little lost. Maybe we just can rattle off a list of “Well I did this and then that and then this other thing happened.” But exactly how we got to where we are, regardless of our best laid plans, is often a mystery to us as human beings. As I often tell students and colleagues in the planning discipline of enterprise architecture, “Man plans, and G-d laughs.”

While we may think we are going about fulfilling our plans and accomplishing our life dreams, the truth is that everything ultimately comes from G-d. He gives you the strength, the health, the family and friends as support, the talent, the opportunity, and the right thoughts in your head and the right words in your mouth to do what you do. Of course, we must do our part and the hard work to find and fulfill our mission in life and to overcome the challenges we face, but we are flesh and blood and in the bigger realm of things, messengers of G-d in fulfilling his bigger plan for all of us. If we open our eyes, we realize that wherever we end up and whatever happens to us is by His merciful decree.


(Credit Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

Share/Save/Bookmark

August 16, 2018

Breaking The Paradigm

So a colleague has this sticker (with a do not image) on their computer that says:

"But we've always done it that way."

They told me a funny story about the lady that made the ham with the head and tail ends always cut off.

One day, her daughter asked, "Why mom do you make the ham with the head and tail ends always cut off?"

The mother answers and says because "My mother always made it that way!"

So they went to her mother and ask the question and they get the same answer again.

Finally, they went to her great grandmother and ask, "Why do you always make the ham with the head and tail ends cut off?"

And the old lady takes a breath, pauses, and says, "Because, we didn't have a pan big enough to fit the whole ham!"

Just thought this was a great lesson on critical thinking and also on "asking why."

Change can be brought about by questioning underlying assumptions and historical ways of doing things and bringing an open mind and fresh light to it. ;-)

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
Share/Save/Bookmark

February 16, 2018

It's For Us

I love this saying from one of my colleagues:
"G-d doesn't do it to us. 
He does it for us!"

Instead of asking with anger and resentment "why me?" -- perhaps we can try to see the larger picture and be grateful for all the blessings and opportunities that G-d does give us. 

While certainly there is pain and suffering in this world, there is also the chance to learn, grow, and become stronger and better people. 

We are here to hopefully leave the world a better place than before we got here. 

The perspective that the challenges and obstacles are not meant to really harm us, but to help us is not an easy pill to swallow.

But maybe it really is the enlightened view of faith that we all need to fight on and overcome. ;-)

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

Share/Save/Bookmark

May 28, 2017

Arguing The Negative

I thought this was an interesting sign this gentlemen had.

It says:


"Those who reject Jesus do so because of sin, not science or evidence."

Overall, religion is a matter of personal faith not to be argued, but rather when based to good, to be wholly respected. 

This argument though was basically saying, not to reject this particular tenet of faith of a major religion because there is "not science or evidence" from which to reject.

But usually, don't we look for science or evidence to accept or do something. 

In other words, the default usually is that if you want me to believe in something or somebody, prove to me why I should

It's a bad argument when you ask me to prove to you why you shouldn't believe in something. 

Very often this is the same argument people use in relationships and in organizations.

We do the same thing everyday or over and over again, and we often don't ask ourselves why we do it this way or believe this is a good way of doing something...we just do it. 

And in fact, when someone new comes in with "fresh eyes" and questions why we do it a certain way or have we considered another approach, we ask them to prove to us with "science or evidence" why their way is better, rather than reexamine our own ways and means.

I'm not in any way questioning here G-d or religion, but rather simply our approach to self-examination, introspection, and betterment.

Don't ask me to prove to you why you should reject something, but rather be prepared to defend your hypothesis. ;-)

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
Share/Save/Bookmark

November 29, 2015

Stop If'ing Me

Often in life, I hear people say how if only in life things could've been different. 

Then they could've been happy...successful...satisfied...contributed more...been a better husband/wife, father/mother, son/daughter, employee or Jew/Christian/Muslim...achieved more...gotten further in life...become more...saved more...been more charitable...or a better person.

I remember in elementary school, in one class when the kids would ask lots of questions..."What if [this]?" or "What if [that]?"

And the teacher (who happened to be the vice principle) would start to get exacerbated, and would blurt out, "If, if, if...if my grandmother had wheels she'd be a trolley!"

Not very complimentary to his grandmother, but point well taken--we can ask if till we're blue in the face, but what does that accomplish except make excuses for ourselves or fantasize about something that isn't. 

This came up yesterday when I was talking with some people about the Syrian+ refugee crisis and what is the obligation and right thing to do in terms of Europe and America taking in so many of these people.

And someone said, "Well why should we take them in if they can already go to so many Muslim countries that could take them in--why are we involved?"

And one of the other people goes, "Well that's a big if about the other Muslim countries taking them in--because they don't seem to want to help them."

And then he adds this funny saying to solidify his point, "If the queen had another appendage, she'd be the king!"

Um, okay...that's another way to put it. 

Not sure this answers the refugee question about who is or should be taking responsibility and helping whom.

But that's the thing about "if's, ands, or buts" in life...these can be real questions or they can become convenient excuses, conditions, and qualifications.

And that is why we have to discern if something is a real question that makes us examine things harder and more carefully to make a better decision or whether it's just another dead end or side track to nowhere. ;-)

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
Share/Save/Bookmark