Here’s the big moment in our interview when Orit tests me, much in the same way God tested Abraham by asking him to sacrifice his son Isaac.
Luke: “Do you believe that God is separate from the universe?”
She looks flustered. The question has taken her breath away. She blushes.
Orit: “Luke! We’re getting so philosophical.”
That’s what all the girls tell me.
Luke: “Well, you studied Philosophy. I couldn’t help it.”
Orit giggles and leans in: “I think!”
She waves her hands and rocks back and forth. “I think this is getting you a little excited.”
*** That was Orit’s test of me!
Luke: “Please! I’m a holy man. I don’t get excited.”
So, gentle reader, how well did I handle Orit’s test?
Amy says: “You got it right. You made light of it.”
Orit pours herself a cup of water. She looks away from me to the water and remembers all the overheated blog posts I wrote about her. “I don’t know. From what you’ve written about me, I don’t know.”
The temperature has gone up 50 degrees in the hovel.
Orit briefly looks at me and then turns away, holding out her cup of holy water, looking over the glories of the hovel, imagining what life would be like here, the life of the mind, the life of Torah, the life of art and blogging, holiness and mitzvot, studying Bava Kama Sutra every night, dissecting important moral issues from the lump of blankets beside the toilet, reaching for the stars and the pea-stained cups while keeping our feet on my iJoy foot vibrator (recommended by Oprah!), breathing in the purified air next to my Air Free machine, taking the Gemara’s approach to the politics of the day, grappling with our ethics, our weaknesses, the frailty of our flesh, the intensity of our desires to connect with the Almighty, the loftiness of God’s moral demands upon us, what would the rabbis think of what we’re doing, would Rabbi Union approve, what would Rob Eshman say, would they be scandalized? Do they realize we’re up to no good in the hovel. The door is closed. We’re violating Judaism’s prohibitions on yichud (being together with a member of the opposite sex — not your husband or fmaily member — behind closed doors).
If this interview doesn’t shift and shift sharply right now, we might just get up and start dancing.
Orit turns around and opens the door. “Yichud!”
Luke: “Spinoza was basically a pantheist.”
Orit: “That’s a very simplistic way of looking at his views.”