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What I Believe, by Asch, Sholem
Published by G.P. Putnam's Sons
Hardcover 201 pages
Measures 8.5 x 6 inches Weighs 1 pound 1 ounce

Condition: Good.
Black boards are tight with slight blemishes, overall clean. Bumped corners and lightly frayed edges. Yellow text on cover and yellow text on spine. Inside back free leaf has pencil very nice writing, just a word.
Inside back cover has pastedown of the original book jacket description of book.
Pages are off-white, text is crisp and clear. Deckled edge pages.

Believing man, whether Jew or Christian, who has
been brought up in one of the prophetic faiths, accepts
every punishment which is visited upon him, no matter
how hard it bears upon his destiny, not as a sign of
rejection or indifference on the part of the divinity, as does
fatalistic man, but as a sign of his portion in the divinity.
He se es in every such punishment the warning hand
of God. Man the believer makes of his tribulations occa­
sions for a self-accounting, a review of all his deeds, a
confession of his defects. He bows his head, humbles
his pride, and with a heart that has been purified con­
tinues along the path which has been prepared for him
by his destiny. Thus believing man transforms every
punishment from a curse into a blessing of God, every
degradation from a defeat into a victory, every shame
from a humiliation into a purification which brings a
new discipline into his personality. It may be said with­
out exaggeration that the believer is more beholden for
his spiritual and even his material progress to the fail­
ures than to the successes which he has encountered in
his life. That which he regarded at the moment of its
occurrence as a disaster, becomes, through the medium
of what it taught him, a piece of good fortune. And this
truth, which holds for individuals, holds equally for
peoples and religions.

vi Foreword
In these days, when the punishment of God has com
not only upon individuals, but upon entire peoples, yfa
countries are transformed overnight from lands 0f
freedom into camps of slavery, when an entire com'
nent is in process of obliteration, when civilized peoples
are reduced to the status of primitive tribes under the
rule of a master-race; in these days when God himself
is trampled under foot and prophetic faith utterly hu­
miliated, has not the time come for such a reckoning
and review, not only for the individual, but for all of
us? Has not the time come for a searching of the heart
a close examination of our acts and failures, in order
that we may learn from them the great lesson which
they carry?
As one of many who feel upon their shoulders the
crushing burden of the time, as one who suffers in the
common torment, I have taken it upon myself to awaken
certain ancient memories, to point to ancient moral
values which are charged with the power of salvation
for us and for our days.
The will to see the world emerge strengthened and
purified from the calamity under which it lies prostrate,
the longing to help transform the punishment of God into
his blessing, constitute my right and supply me with
the courage to set down in writing my innermost con­
victions and to offer them to the public in this book.
January 20, 1941

What I Believe, by Sholem Asch 1941 First Edition G.P. Putnam's Sons Hardcover Book Religious Hebrew Christian Modern Philosophical Thought


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  • Vintage item from the 1940s
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