Moshe-Mordechai van Zuiden
Psychology, Medicine, Science, Politics, Oppression, Integrity, Philosophy, Jews -- For those who like their news and truths frank and sharp

Judaism really says this about the origin of the Universe

Judaism can live with the Big Bang, reject it, or combine both scenarios.

It is risky to portray Jewish ideas too narrowly because when Science finds facts that contradict it, Judaism is undercut for nothing.

Creation Ex Nihilo

When Science held that the world was eternal, simple Jews held that Judaism was revolutionary in claiming it was not: The Creation Story.

Then geologists found shells in mountaintops. The world was not as static as previously assumed.

In 1920, astronomers found the Universe is expanding (redshift). Einstein corrected what he called the greatest blunder of his carrier.

Retrograde extrapolation ‘back-casted’ the Big Bang’s starting point.

Monotheistic theologians beamed with pride. We always said so. The great Maimonides said so. The Universe was finite, created from naught.

Then astronomers found it even was expanding exponentially (ever faster).

Or is the World Eternal, After All?

Meanwhile, black matter and energy and many other contradictions in the theory still show physics’ understanding of the Universe is feeble.

Then came scientists with ideas that there might have been something before the Big Bang. That existence could be like a pendulum that swings from rapid extension to the Big Crunch and back to a next Big Bang.

And now, even ideas that the Universe is not expanding at all, after all!

Or, that the objects in the Universe are exponentially removing themselves from each other while the Universe itself is shrinking somewhat.

Meanwhile, scientists don’t even understand what goes on in our own Sun.

But Judaism is fine with all of that.

The Torah places the Creation Story in a world full of water, dark light, the deep, and whatnot. The great Gersonides already pointed out that that rhymes with the idea this world is eternal or, at least, not created from nix.

There is an old Jewish idea (R’ Avahu) that G^d created a large (but finite) number of worlds, destroyed them, and built the next one until He was satisfied. Some then placed dinosaurs in a previous world to explain them. But whatever the details, so much for creation of our world from nothing. Each world could have been created from scratch, or only the first one.

Judaism is a Life-Style, Not an Academic Mind Game

The Torah teaches behavior, attitude, and character, barely philosophy, or history. Judaism tells us how to live. Speculation about the far past or future should take a backseat to what we should do now.

Judaism believes in facts. There is no anti-Scientific Judaism. It will not deny proper findings (but speculative theories of Science it may reject).

Judaism can live with G^d (not) creating this world from scratch. It will do just fine with either scientific position.

Just like, when needed, it can also live with the Evolution Theory, as Chief Rabbis Hirsch and Kook already pointed out. I add: Why would G^d be ‘allowed’ to use gravity but not evolution?!

Judaism can live with the Big Bang, reject it, or combine both scenarios.

Our Creation Story doesn’t say how G^d did it. It’s not a cookbook that, if studied well enough, teaches you to do the same. It only says: Look with amazement at the world around you and get how ordered everything is. Those two things, awe and order, suggest a Creat^r, the Beyond.

About the Author
MM is a prolific and creative writer and thinker, previously a daily blog contributor to the TOI. He often makes his readers laugh, mad, or assume he's nuts—close to perfect blogging. He's proud that his analytical short comments are removed both from left-wing and right-wing news sites. None of his content is generated by the new bore on the block, AI. * As a frontier thinker, he sees things many don't yet. He's half a prophet. Half. Let's not exaggerate. Or not at all because he doesn't claim G^d talks to him. He gives him good ideas—that's all. MM doesn't believe that people observe and think in a vacuum. He, therefore, wanted a broad bio that readers interested can track a bit what (lack of) backgrounds, experiences, and educations contribute to his visions. * This year, he will prioritize getting his unpublished books published rather than just blog posts. Next year, he hopes to focus on activism against human extinction. To find less-recent posts on a subject XXX among his over 2000 archived ones, go to the right-top corner of a Times of Israel page, click on the search icon and search "zuiden, XXX". One can find a second, wilder blog, to which one may subscribe too, here: or by clicking on the globe icon next to his picture on top. * Like most of his readers, he believes in being friendly, respectful, and loyal. However, if you think those are his absolute top priorities, you might end up disappointed. His first loyalty is to the truth. He will try to stay within the limits of democratic and Jewish law, but he won't lie to support opinions or people when don't deserve that. (Yet, we all make honest mistakes, which is just fine and does not justify losing support.) He admits that he sometimes exaggerates to make a point, which could have him come across as nasty, while in actuality, he's quite a lovely person to interact with. He holds - how Dutch - that a strong opinion doesn't imply intolerance of other views. * Sometimes he's misunderstood because his wide and diverse field of vision seldomly fits any specialist's box. But that's exactly what some love about him. He has written a lot about Psychology (including Sexuality and Abuse), Medicine (including physical immortality), Science (including basic statistics), Politics (Israel, the US, and the Netherlands, Activism - more than leftwing or rightwing, he hopes to highlight reality), Oppression and Liberation (intersectionally, for young people, the elderly, non-Whites, women, workers, Jews, LGBTQIA+, foreigners and anyone else who's dehumanized or exploited), Integrity, Philosophy, Jews (Judaism, Zionism, Holocaust and Jewish Liberation), the Climate Crisis, Ecology and Veganism, Affairs from the news, or the Torah Portion of the Week, or new insights that suddenly befell him. * Chronologically, his most influential teachers are his parents, Nico (natan) van Zuiden and Betty (beisye) Nieweg, Wim Kan, Mozart, Harvey Jackins, Marshal Rosenberg, Reb Shlomo Carlebach, and, lehavdil bein chayim lechayim, Rabbi Dr. Natan Lopes Cardozo, Rav Zev Leff, and Rav Meir Lubin. This short list doesn't mean to disrespect others who taught him a lot or a little. One of his rabbis calls him Mr. Innovation [Ish haChidushim]. Yet, his originalities seem to root deeply in traditional Judaism, though they may grow in unexpected directions. In fact, he claims he's modernizing nothing. Rather, mainly basing himself on the basic Hebrew Torah text, he tries to rediscover classical Jewish thought almost lost in thousands of years of stifling Gentile domination and Jewish assimilation. (He pleads for a close reading of the Torah instead of going by rough assumptions of what it would probably mean and before fleeing to Commentaries.) This, in all aspects of life, but prominently in the areas of Free Will, Activism, Homosexuality for men, and Redemption. * He hopes that his words will inspire and inform, and disturb the comfortable and comfort the disturbed. He aims to bring a fresh perspective rather than harp on the obvious and familiar. When he can, he loves to write encyclopedic overviews. He doesn't expect his readers to agree. Rather, original minds should be disputed. In short, his main political positions are among others: anti-Trumpism, for Zionism, Intersectionality, non-violence, anti those who abuse democratic liberties, anti the fake ME peace process, for original-Orthodoxy, pro-Science, pro-Free Will, anti-blaming-the-victim, and for down-to-earth, classical optimism, and happiness. Read his blog on how he attempts to bridge any tensions between those ideas or fields. * He is a fetal survivor of the pharmaceutical industry (, born in 1953 to his parents who were Dutch-Jewish Holocaust survivors who met in the largest concentration camp in the Netherlands, Westerbork. He grew up a humble listener. It took him decades to become a speaker too, and decades more to admit to being a genius. But his humility was his to keep. And so was his honesty. Bullies and con artists almost instantaneously envy and hate him. He hopes to bring new things and not just preach to the choir. * He holds a BA in medicine (University of Amsterdam) – is half a doctor. He practices Re-evaluation Co-counseling since 1977, is not an official teacher anymore, and became a friendly, powerful therapist. He became a social activist, became religious, made Aliyah, and raised three wonderful kids. Previously, for decades, he was known to the Jerusalem Post readers as a frequent letter writer. For a couple of years, he was active in hasbara to the Dutch-speaking public. He wrote an unpublished tome about Jewish Free Will. He's a strict vegan since 2008. He's an Orthodox Jew but not a rabbi. * His writing has been made possible by an allowance for second-generation Holocaust survivors from the Netherlands. It has been his dream since he was 38 to try to make a difference by teaching through writing. He had three times 9-out-of-10 for Dutch at his high school finals but is spending his days communicating in English and Hebrew - how ironic. G-d must have a fine sense of humor. In case you wonder - yes, he is a bit dyslectic. If you're a native English speaker and wonder why you should read from people whose English is only their second language, consider the advantage of having an original peek outside of your cultural bubble. * To send any personal reaction to him, scroll to the top of the blog post and click Contact Me. * His newest books you may find here:
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