500.30 MAN’S ASCENT/CREATION
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The closer man approaches the achievement of his spiritual and other potentialities, the closer man comes to fulfilling a primal quest of creation.398
Theoretically, attainment of spiritual potentiality would obviate the need for Divine contraction. For Divine self-contraction is solely for the purpose of granting man the necessary freedom to achieve his potential.399 The broad concept of mankind’s ultimate redemption (and salvation) transcends most major religious lines; it is common in Western religions and Eastern religions, “archaic religions” and “modern religions.” Seemingly this concept is rooted in man’s religious instinct. Hope springs not just eternal, but almost universal.
When mankind has reached its spiritual potential, a primal purpose of creation will, hopefully, have been fulfilled, and a redemptive age, hopefully, achieved. Jewish philosophy is therefore on the right track when it is reluctant to deny a role for other religions in the ultimate Divine scheme.400 For the spiritual ascendency of mankind in general is intertwined with the Jewish role, and of course plays a most important role in the general development for potential.
. . . the quest for perfection, which is the most idealistic striving of our nature, directs us to seek the higher unity that must finally come in the world. In that day-God will be one and His name one.
. . . the divine remains committed to, and yearning for, the attainment of the final perfection.
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398 See Mamlak. “Gershon Mamlak Responds,” Midstream, November 1984, p. 30. “. . . with the loss of its potentialities Judaism’s covenantal mission has been obscured, and the self-image of Jews damaged.”
399 See ibid., p. 33. “With Judaism realizing its potentialities as ‘A Light unto the Nations,’ Redemption will affect and transform all human communities.”
400 Kaplan, If You Were God, p. 17. “It was in this spirit that Judaism gave birth to both Christianity and Islam. [Although far from perfection], these religions are a step in the right direction. (Kuzari, 4:23, Tshuvos Rambarn, 58).”
401 Kook, Orot Yisroel 5:2, as cited in Bokser, Abraham Isaac Kook, p. 24.
402 Greenberg, Perspectives: Voluntary Covenant, p. 2.
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