Are faith and doubt mutually exclusive, or is one necessary for the other? Does having faith mean one can't have doubts, or might faith actually require us to have doubts? We live in a religiously ambiguous world: there are good reasons to believe in God, and good reasons not to. We live in a world suffused with profound love and wondrous beauty; we also live in a world overrun by suffering, oppression, and degradation. How do we make sense of our lives amidst all this? In this honest and searching lecture, Rabbi Shai Held shared personal and philosophical reflections on God; on faith and doubt--and on why doubt is necessary for faith; on suffering and how we respond to it; and on how the modern world shapes how believers and non-believers ought to talk to one another.
The fourth and final lecture in our Fall 2016 series on Faith and Doubt in the Modern World. Recorded live on December 1, 2016. The series was presented in partnership with the Samuel Bronfman Foundation in memory of Edgar Bronfman, who struggled with questions of faith and doubt for much of his life, and whose love of and commitment to Torah were an inspiration to many.