“The Silent Question”

From time to time, I seem to hear a question echoing out of the depths of stillness. But he [sic] who asks it does not know that he is asking it and he to whom the question is addressed is not aware that he is being questioned. It is the question that the world of today, in utter unawareness, puts to religion. This is the question: ‘Are you, perhaps, the power that can help me? Can you teach me to believe? Not in phantasmagoria and mystagogy, not in ideologies or in party programs, nor in cleverly thought-out and skillfully presented sophisms that appear true only while they are successful or have prospects of success, but in the unconditional and irrefutable. Teach me to have faith in reality, in the verities of existence, so that life will afford some aim for me and existence will have some meaning. Who, indeed, can help me if you cannot?’

Martin Buber, “The Silent Question,” in *On Judaism* Edited by Nahum N. Glatzer. Schocken Books, 1967 (1951), 202-213, 202.

red line embellished

Image: Interior New Synagogue Szeged Hungary, Emmanuel Dyan, CC BY 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons

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