What good is this frumkeit* that is cultivated simply by wearing blinders?
Personally, I think that the person who has quested and tried and dealt with various issues in an attempt to act as a committed Jew but who ends up non-observant is more authentically religious than the one who maintains his religiosity by avoiding everything that could potentially undermine it.
More simply, in the words of a very wise person I once knew, "There is a heresy that is holier than observance."
I might qualify that statement by stating, "than some types of observance."
So perhaps I may argue, even though it may seem revolutionary, that the very person who denies God or who becomes non-observant in his own way is actually the person with the deepest, most committed, most authentic relationship to Him.
Thanks, Chana! :-)
I've long felt the same way, of course. If God exists, he surely prefers an honest and courageous atheism to a sheltered and cowardly observance. As Thomas Jefferson wrote:
Question with boldness even the existence of a God; because, if there be one, he must more approve of the homage of reason, than that of blind-folded fear.
There are courageous and honest religious people. I think Chana is one of them. Too many, though, shy away from difficult questions. I believe the overwhelming majority of Orthodox Jews fall into that category. If you're the kind of person who hasn't taken a position on evolution, or dismissed the Documentary Hypothesis without even an investigation of the subject, you probably do too. If you've honestly investigated and found them untrue, you might be wrong, but you aren't a coward.
* Orthodox Judaism