Saturday, December 10, 2005

when Bad things happens to Good People by Harold Kushner

When Bad Things Happen to Good People by Harold Kushner..when Kushner son Aaron was just three years old, he was diagnosed with a rapid aging disease; he died after his fourteenth birthday. Out of this harrowing experience, the author has created a meditation about God, human suffering and life's tragedies. He contends that bad things happen to good people because it sometimes just goes that way; we are given freedom of choice and consequently life is full of injustices; nature is morally blind; and there may be "corners of the universe where God's creative light has not yet penetrated.

All the responses to tragedy which we have considered have at least one thing in common. They all assume that God is the cause of our suffering, and they try to understand why God would want us to suffer. … There may be another approach. Maybe God does not cause our suffering. Maybe it happens for some reason other than the will of God.

book address three basic questions :
  • What should you do or say when someone you care about faces tragedy?
  • How should you think about and react to the tragedy in your own life?
  • What kind of God can we believe in when bad things can happen to good people?
He theorizes that God doesn’t cause the bad things to happen and according to him - the most profound and complete consideration of human suffering in the Bible, perhaps in all of literature, is the Book of Job. While reading this book I found conflicting messages in the Book of Job and Kushner acknowledges that it is difficult to understand. If you are not familiar with it, as I was not, reading this chapter many times may be necessary. The final thought that Kushner makes in this chapter is one that runs throughout the book: If we can bring ourselves to accept that there are some things that God doesn't’t control, good things can be possible. But we can’t hold realistic expectations of God because they may never come.

There is a lot of writing now about quantum physics(that theory which says that nothing is random). an interesting perspective would be to understand what the Kushner says and understand "Why Bad Things Happen To Good People," but at the same time, my own personal theoretical perspective at this point is that may be there are no accidents.

Avoid to author there is No reason and NO exceptions for nice people. He concedes that all we can really do is realize that death is one of the given conditions of life. “We can’t control it or sometimes even postpone it. All we can do is try to rise beyond the question “why did it happen? And begin to ask the question “what do I do now that it has happened?”

Kushner talks about feeling guilty about not getting what we prayed for but he says that if we don’t want to give up prayer there is another possibility. That possibility requires our changing how we understand what it means to pray and what it means for our prayers to be answered. To me, if things are random and God can’t change the past, what if our make up is to not be able to bear up under long-term illness? If God can help us with this, why can’t he help the illness? Perhaps it is my wishful thinking. I made lots of deals with God while my one of best friend was sick. (I now learn from Kushner that deals with God are wrong.) I lost the deals but I was able to cope because I believed there was a reason for my friend's death.

What Good, Then, Is Religion? I was wondering the same thing! glad this was covered in the book. wondered if he has made it harder for people to accept their illnesses and misfortunes now that we know, if we agree with him, that they are not sent “by God as part of some master plan.” He again cites his philosophy that this is the time we accept what has happened and figure out what we will do about it. Not “where does the tragedy come from? But where does it lead?”

Are you capable of forgiving and accepting in love a world which has disappointed you by not being perfect, a world in which there is so much unfairness and cruelty, disease and crime, earthquake and accident? Can you forgive its imperfections and love it because it is capable of containing great beauty and goodness, and because it is the only world we have?…
in my view on the human place in the universe, and the role of human judgement: I guess, we go beyond our station when we attempt to judge the universe as a whole, to proclaim that it is livable or unlivable, fair or unfair. may be our role is to accept what happens to us and to do what we can with the possibilities that life offers us--not to judge that we deserved to have something else happen to us, or that we should have different possibilities.

I must admit, Iam NOT a great follower of GOD(not very regilious person) but I believe supermepower/nature..evil, living life for self & others good with underline ethics & value systems. I know when someone is in pain, I simply need to say that Iam sorry, then I should “shut up and listen!”. may be People don’t expect an answer to the question – “Why did this happen to me/us?” They need to know it did not happen because of them personally, and they need you to tell them this

There are no answers to WHY bad things happen. No logical answers. The question is WHEN bad things happen what can you do? If you are the one in pain – you can go on. If you are a friend, relative, or even acquaintance – you can help others cope with their pain.

Book is heavy-hearted spiritual journey..if you are interested in the subject then you should try it.

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