What's Religion Got to Do with It?


Some ideas from the Jewish faith have found their way into my novel, 'And All is Always Now.' One is the idea that when a beautiful event, such as a wedding, is scheduled, it should still be celebrated even if there is severe hardship in the case of another family member or loved one. What are your thoughts on this? If the sadness or worry seems insurmountable, would it be better to postpone the wedding? Or should the joy of the wedding be seen as so glorious that it takes precedence?

A second Jewish idea in 'And All is Always Now' is one that relates to the concept of Time, which, of course, is very much the theme of the whole book. In this case, one of the characters in the novel talks about the intrigue of the Creation story as told in the Book of Genesis; she says that we are told that God created the world in six days, but it was not until the fourth day that God created the sun and the moon so as to give a measurement of Time. So the question then becomes, what were the measurements of Time on the first three days before the fourth day? Is there an independent measurement of Time that has always existed and is completely devoid of being paced out by the earth's rotation around the sun? What do you believe?

A third idea borrowed from Judaism is the very optimistic one heard in the sound of the Shofar, which is the ram's horn blown on Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur. The first sound that the Shofar makes is 'Tekiya,' which means 'whole.' Then the Shofar makes a triple sound, implying that the whole was broken into three parts, and this is followed by a series of quick short blasts, signifying a total smash. But, mercifully, the Shofar sound ends once more with a repetition of 'Tekiya,' meaning that wholeness has been restored. This special faith in healing is beautiful, and it certainly was reassuring and empowering to one of my novel's characters who had been very badly disadvantaged. Can we believe in the veracity of this compassionate response? What do you think?