I am 42 1/2 years old. Although I was born to a Jewish mother, whose mother was Jewish (which, according to halacha
, makes me Jewish too), I just could never bring myself to believe in anything the Bible said. Or about God as this Supreme Deity.
I guess it began when I was a small child. I did not have a typical childhood. I was an unwanted, out-of-wedlock accident. My mom got pregnant before Roe v. Wade
. So she didn't have any choices available to her. In fact, in my state, unmarried women could not get the birth control pill back in the mid-1960's. So there were TWO of us that got no choice: her and me.
My mother walked out on me when I was 2. I remember the finest details surrounding that incident as if it happened only yesterday. So, my grandmother (a Torah-observant Jew) raised me. She was mother and father both to me. She began teaching me the Torah (what many of you would call "the Old Testament") before kindergarden. And that's when I began having problems accepting this entire concept of a perfect, all-knowing, ever-present God as the truth. Because he flunked in the planning department, based on just my own limited life experience at that point.
My disenchantment with it began in the beginning — the creation story and the "original sin" that amounts to nothing but one big shell game. The questions I had as a very young child were:
- If God is so perfect that he can create the entire world in 7 days, why couldn't he do it right — you know, make the world minus things like devastating storms, diseases, litter, and mean people who don't love and want their children?
- If God was so perfect, why did he place a forbidden fruit tree in the center of his world knowing his creation, the first man and the first woman, would be too tempted to obey his command not to touch it (let alone eat it)? (Seemed like a set-up to me)
- Why would a perfect God allow a decieving third party (the serpent) into his garden when he knew it would tempt Eve to eat the fruit and precipitate an entire chain of events resulting in Adam and Eve being cursed with death...and all their descendants thereafter?
- Why did God even bother creating woman since he obviously hates us so much (which is apparent since Eve got the shittier end of the stick by far in the first blame game)?
- Why did all of Adam and Eve's descendants have to suffer punishment for a "crime" they had no part of partaking in?
- If God had his act together, why is it that rabbis constantly argue about how to interpret God's word? Does a perfect God need a proofreading department, and if so, then how can he be perfect?
- If I as a Jew, am one of God's "chosen people", why don't I even have a mom and a dad who wanted (therefore chose) me as their child like all the Gentile children I knew did?
Now, as a small child I saw this as nothing but one big, elaborate shell game. It made me question gender injustice and every other issue that hadn't worked out quite right in just my own life alone. So, at an age when most children still believed in Santa Claus, I could not bring myself to believe in God. I was always the child who asked "why" to the point of annoying even the most patient adults. I sent rabbis, ministers, and priests running in the opposite direction. My disposition and propensity for questioning injustices and contradictions has not improved with age...I'm even more of a pain in the ass today at age 42 1/2 years old than I was as an elementary school aged little girl. I still make people very uncomfortable when I ask "why."