Religion in most cases is a wonderful thing. I see the wonderful life of my Brother the Beloved Rav Roov and his family as part of this. Religion forms the framework of the life for the Beloved Rav Roov and family. The only thing odd about the Beloved Rav Roov is his love of Spiderman. We sometimes think of clergymen as aloof apart from us, but they have some of the intrests and sometimes weaknesses as we do. We are dismayed when clergymen fail due to human weaknesses. However, some of us forget that a clergyman is a human mediator whose job it is to serve his congregation. All humans have the potential of sucumbing to human weakness it is just part of the human condition. We shouldn't be shocked that a Rabbi likes Spiderman or that a Roman Catholic Priest likes the Dodgers even long after they left Brooklyn or a Minister that likes Nascar.
Now what if Rav Roov sudenly decided that instead of liking Spiderman he is Spiderman. His problem would have nothing to do with religion. He would have an amusing condition that would be best handled by a skilled professionals and possibly
medication. Currently Rav Roov only dresses as Spiderman on Purim and at Bar Mitzvahs
so there is no concern.
Life is not a sitcom and if it were mine would be canceled. Life's problems are not solved in 30 minutes. Dr Phil can't fix a life that has decades of problems in twenty minutes. The practice of psychology is a long process that entails much training. In many ways there is an element of art to it as well. I do have a BBA but I have 2O credits in psychology, mostly industrial. I am by no means an expert in the practice and my educational experience has taught me dealing with these matters especially the more serious types belong in the hands of skilled professionals. You would not send a Rabbi to fix your car, nor should you send your car mechanic out to do a circumsicion.
Islam posses some rather ineresting and serious problems. When we look at our own religion the notion is mostly guiding and improving lives. The notion of Christians, Jews, Hindus and most other people blowing themselves up and wasting lives is incongruent with reality. The challenge of Islam is that it is not religion as we understand it. There are a few quirky types who dream of a Jewish theocracy, but it is luckily a distinct minority. Even those types do not dream of global conquest.
The begining of what is and isn't a pathology is a complex issue. The notion of blowing one's self up for 72 virgins to me is a sign of a mental defect. The word cult has a negative impact when paired with a religion. We talk of the Cult of Jim Jones and have an image of Koolaide drinking lunatics out of touch with reality. There are certainly cult like aspects of Islam. There is a dehumanization process
in certain elements of Islam. A regular person has neither the desire or motivation
to shoot schoolkids in the back, behead a bound captive or toss a senior citizen in a wheel chair off a cruise ship. The reality is that the fiery utopian rhetoric deconditions some of its followers on the value of human life.
This deconditioning of our common humanity is similar in the political arena. The utopian rhetoric of Nazism with its master race created endless wars and the Holocaust. Communism produced class genocide, Gulags, Killing Fields, Boat people and brain impaired film devotees in MA.
The common denominator is the quest for a magic solution to all of lifes problems
itself may be the sign of a mental defect. In our lives we all have ups and downs.
Some of us have quirky tastes and those differences are part of lives. We all burn
meatloaves, get flat tires, have annoying relatives and these are just aspects of a normal life.
The other point is that if utopia did exist most of us would be bored to death. One of the running jokes is that family life was peaceful except when meatloaf was served. All the folks in the house would square off in gladiator style confict to get those end cuts. Vegtables, dishes, relatives anything not nailed to the ground could end up airborne. As an adult I learned that slicing the meatloaf 3/4 of the way through cooking and placing the sclices back in the oven turned twice solves the old family problem. I now have a whole mealoaf that tastes like end cuts. Yet, I also devalued the whole meat loaf experience and it is just another day in the kitchen