Re: Reward and Punishment Is It Justified??

Bernard Laufer (
Thu, 5 Jun 1997 21:48:10 -0400

Matthew W Pickut wrote:
> Bernard Laufer's question at first caused me to pause because of the
> assumptions that Mr. Laufer makes. Mr. Laufer seems to makes two
> assumptions about the nature of souls:
> 1. That when our maker gives us a soul that it is of a
> qualitative status. i.e. a evil soul or a good soul.
> 2. That this qualitative state of our soul at birth is static
> throughout life and cannot be changed.

I make neither of these assumptions. I suggest Mr.Pickut carefully read
the question again, as well as the other responses so far to this problem.
In particular make sure to understand what is meant by the bechira point
(free-will) (brought up by Mr. Kahan), as well as Mr. Berger's response, my
response to Mr. Berger, as well as what is meant by a soul in Judaism. I
advise Mr.Pickut to look up the Rambam's or the Ramchal's definition of a
soul or better yet look them both up. If he does all that, I think he will
see this problem in its proper light.

Dov Laufer

P.S. I am using the words "inferior" and "superior" in this problem in
relative terms i.e., one is better than the other -- not in the definitive
sense of evil versus good.