Keep Trying

Wednesday, August 04, 2004

On Cultivating Life's Greatest Pleasure

Steve Tobin asked in a recent comment why I spell G-d with a "-" instead of an "o".

I was going to respond this week, but Lynn B beat me to it:

Since Mike hasn't answered your question yet, here's my attempt at a response. The name of G-d is considered quite powerful in itself. And it's to be treated with the utmost respect. Traditionally, it's not even vocalized except in prayer with an adequate quorum (minyan) present, and it's never written in correspondence or other secular publication because the document might inadvertently be thrown away or burned or even tossed casually in a corner. Some people don't apply this rule to computer text, as deleting it isn't the same as crumpling up or destroying a piece of paper. Others do.

I just wanted to add that my Rabbi's opinion is that computer text on a screen is not considered writing. However, there is the small chance that someone will print out a blog entry and throw it away disrepectfully, so I write G-d.

If you are not working on developing an increasing awareness of G-d, this all might sound trivial. But developing a relationship with G-d is the greatest pleasure available to a human being and every detail is important.

Thanks to Steve for the question and to Lynn for the excellent answer.