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What is G-d not?

by Rabbi Mendy Hecht

A. G-d is not any one particular person, place, thing, or concept, form -- concrete or abstract -- of the physical universe. Ergo, worshiping the “Son of G-d,” the Roman god of war or the Norse god of bad weather is out. Worshiping the power of Nature, mighty though it may be, or seeing G-d as only Love, is a fundamental violation of Judaism’s most sacred laws, one for which Jews have laid down their lives rather than violate.

B. Pantheism

Pantheism is the erroneous belief that G-d is everything--that when I worship the sun or moon or mountain or flower or animal, I am really worshiping G-d, Who is inside any of those things. Sounds good, but wrong-o, friend. Big no-no. Judaism rejects pantheism, because while G-d is within that mountain, He is not that mountain—He is much more than that mountain. You cannot label anything as Him. For this reason, it is forbidden to pray in front of any man-made image—a bust, photograph, sculpture and so on. G-d is within everything, but one worships G-d Himself, not any of the things in which He is found.

G-d is within everything, but one worships G-d Himself, not any of the things in which He is found
1. How not to connect to G-d

While you are praying, don’t think that you’re praying to any particular person, place or thing—you’re praying to G-d, the Creator, and to G-d only. The Torah considers praying to anything outside of or lesser than G-d idol worship.

2. Only one G-d

If a solid cube is one cubic foot in dimension, nothing else can fill that space of one cubic foot, because it’s already occupied by the cube. Likewise with G-d: He fills the entire universe, and therefore, than can be no other god or Force outside of Him. Thus, your intellectual forays into the existence of G-d must not lead you to conclude that there are others out there besides Him.

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