Quoting: The Torah View of Man

From the Torah viewpoint humans are the goals and the purpose of the entire creation. Without the Torah perspective, there is no essential difference between a human and a donkey.

Someone looking at the world from a completely secular viewpoint has no basis for the value of man. On the philosophical level, man would have no more inherent worth than any other piece of matter.

Sources: Gesher Hachayim, vol.3, p.52, Rabbi Zelig Pliskin’s Gateway to Happiness, pp.118-9

What make human beings unique except the intent of the Almighty (and yes, I expect folks to disagree)?

The Journey West of Eden


s. Enteressangle/e. Daynes/Science Photo Library

Hashem planted a garden in Eden, to the east, and placed there the man whom He had formed. And Hashem God caused to sprout from the ground every tree that was pleasing to the sight and good for food; also the Tree of Life in the midst of the garden, and the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Bad.

Hashem God said, “It is not good that man be alone; I will make him a helper corresponding to him.”

So Hashem God cast a deep sleep upon the man and he slept; and He took one of his sides and He filled in flesh in its place. Then Hashem God fashioned the side that He had taken from the man into a woman, and He brought her to the man. And the man said, “This time it is bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh. This shall be called Woman, for from man was she taken.” Therefore a man shall leave his father and his mother and cling to his wife and they shall become one flesh.

They were both naked, the man and his wife, and they were not ashamed.

Genesis 2:8-9, 18, 21-25 (Stone Edition Chumash)

Alam was puzzled and tried to work out this new thing he was seeing. This land had not been here the last time he led Nun and Tav to hunt the prey beasts. It was a new place, but it should not be. It was plants, fruits, good to eat, and many beasts.

He was about to lead the two others in for an easy kill. The Imorg could come back to gather the fruits and berries. Then he signaled stop. There was a noise that was not a noise coming from no place. The noise was near a new beast but not coming from the new beast. The new beast was unlike anything Alam or the others had known.

Alam signaled for stealth, for them to go back and wait while he moved forward. He was the bravest of the Morg and brought the clan much game. Now he was faced with what he did not know and his courage was greatly tested.

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The Day I Destroyed the Universe


Image: giantbomb.com

From the Flight Log of Freighter Pilot Camdon Rod

I was only three days out of Delta Epsiloni Four aboard the freighter Cleric’s Hope as her replacement First Mate when I got into a religious argument with the Engineer. I knew when I signed on that the ship was crewed by devotees of the Chosen Ones of Illumination, but I thought if I could just do my job and keep my nose out of their religious practices, I’d be okay. But I had no idea they prayed three times a day, and that doesn’t count praying right before they go to bed, that they almost always pray together as a group, and that all ship activity has to stop when they pray unless it’s a dire emergency.

How the hell can you operate a working freighter in space or dockside when you stop work every four hours to pray for forty-five minutes? Who bloody well flies the ship, navigates to the next port, loads and unloads cargo, maintains the engines? Who bloody well has to actually do work except for the token unbeliever on board…me?

I suppose I’d better back up a bit. My name is Camdon Rod and like I said, a week ago, I signed on as the new First Mate of the Cleric’s Hope, a class B interplanetary freighter that did regular runs between the planets and outposts littering the Gamma and Delta Epsiloni systems.

Unlike my former freighter, the late Cynnabar Breen, may she rest in peace, she was not hyperjump capable, but she was five times larger, so she required a Captain, a Pilot/Navigator, a First Mate (that’s me), an Engineer, and four cargo specialists who doubled as security (sometimes thieves want to steal what freighter’s haul if it’s valuable enough).

I suppose I should have waited for a better opportunity, but I was desperate. They should have known better than to hire a First Mate, even a temporary one, who didn’t follow their religion, but they were desperate, too. The guy I replaced came down with a sudden case of Carmine’s Skoots, so he’d be out of action for a week at least (although rumor on the docks was that he had temporarily lapsed in his faith and had really contracted a case of Salizine overdose, a popular hallucinogenic drink that’s all the rage of the low life bars just a stone’s throw from the freighter bays).

That’s why Targo Ree, Captain of the Cleric’s Hope was desperate for someone to replace his First Mate on this run, but what about me? That requires a bit more explaining.

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