I know, I love the oxymoron of it.
From a symposium on Jewish creativity from this month’s Moment Magazine:
Einstein said it perfectly: Religion without science is blind. A Jewish mystic said that when the Torah came into the world, it was split in two parts—one part was given on Sinai and the other part is nature. Creativity arises from wonder, from being amazed at the magnificence of the world—wondering what’s underlying all the amazing complexity we see all around us. Judaism favors asking questions, whereas some religions expect you to take everything on faith. The very fact that Jews ask questions means they’re being creative because they’re wondering how things work. Doubting isn’t against our faith; for me, doubting is part of it. Doubting is trying to understand how the world works. The subtlety of biblical text itself encourages trying to understand its deeper meaning, looking below the surface to understand what’s really there. Creativity is digging below the surface and finding what’s under the superficial world we see. And in this sense, I think Moses was creative because he realized that God wants arguments.
Gerald Schroeder is a physicist and also teaches at Aish HaTorah College of Jewish Studies. He is author of four books, including The Science of God: The Convergence of Scientific and Biblical Wisdom.