Let My People Know

"Questions grounded in one system of thought cannot be answered by another one"

Living in an alien non-Jewish philosophical, psychological, and social milieu–as all Jews do, even the most pious–it is inevitable that we absorb its basic assumptions and that, as a result, certain of our Jewish assumptions are called into question. 

(How can the Torah speak in such a way? How can such a seemingly unreasonable act be commanded?) 

Yet, upon closer examination the questioner often realizes that his problem is itself simply a function of a different outlook on life, one which he has chosen to replace, and that it is not inherently insoluble. 

The question may be nothing more than a reflex of a consciously discarded but still somehow deeply ingrained Marxist, psychoanalytic, or other theory, the phantom of a dead idea returned to haunt the living.

Questions grounded in one system of thought cannot be answered by another one. 

For example, one who does not believe in miracles, prophecy, or Divine providence cannot expect satisfactory answers to questions about matters of Torah, where such beliefs are taken for granted and fundamental. 

Careful scrutiny of the underlying assumptions behind the questions themselves may be more productive and may yield more satisfactory answers than apologetics. 

–Rabbi Adin Steinsaltz
From "Problems of Faith" in Teshuvah: A Guide for the Newly Observant Jew by Rabbi Adin Steinsaltz