EP42 - Spirituality - Abraham Schnitzler


In this episode of our series Michael is joined by a colleague in the lighting industry, Abraham Schnitzler of CBC Lighting, and the opening of their discussion looks a great deal like some of the friendlier episodes of Get a Grip on Lighting; with prognostications about the future of decentralized power generation and the growing demand for resources as personal wealth grows in China and the developing world. However the conversation slowly pivots away from technology towards the human, as Abraham explains how his faith lets him maintain his head in a world where every individual is being bombarded with the full force of a thousand global scale problems from every direction.


Abraham is a practicing Hasidic Jewish man, and as he carries about the confusion of the world his relationship with G-d allows him to maintain the personal, human scale thinking about large scale troubles. He says it lets him set aside the doomsayers and focus on being a good citizen and letting those actions take care of the rest, as it were.


His religious practices and the nature of modern Judaism become the focus of the rest of their talk as it moves from how his people’s traditional separation from broader society has been seen as something of a benefit when raising children, the way the seeming confinement of their women makes for happier, more stable households. As much as there are strengths, there are a few notable downsides to Judaism in the modern world, Michael tries to understand how he confronts prejudice as individual, as well as how the community is maintaining its safety right now around the world. They also try to clear up some common misconceptions about Jewish law, Jewish culture, and how those are interpreted and lived today.


This instalment concludes with a friendly bet about the end of the world as we know it.