With all the things going on, I was talking to a friend a few minutes ago and I was asking him why don't I just break the various religious laws that have been clashing with my secular desires? Why don't I just say "to hell with it" and give in and do what I want? Why all this struggle in the name of religion?
My friend told me "the one thing that you have acquired through your efforts these past few years regarding religion is integrity. You might not like the decisions you made because you might not like the results regarding how they impact your life and how people react to you, but since you believe your choices are true and moral and you have stuck to them in face of the adversity you have faced to the contrary, that gives you integrity." "...I believe you wouldn't give up your integrity because it is too valuable to you."
So is this my reason for not breaking religious law? My own integrity? I asked him "what about my rebellious thoughts? Isn't that hypocritical for a religious person to have?" He answered "We are both behamas (animals); the difference between you and me is that you will think of a thought and not act upon it, while I will act on that thought without thinking about it. In the end, I did the deceptive deed and you did not indulge. That makes you a better person."
I still had the thought.