It’s interesting thinking about my relationship with my religion. I do not classify myself as religious but my connection is strong. It means a lot to me to be involved in the Jewish community. (I know my mom is smiling widely reading that). But it’s interesting that the majority of my friends are not Jewish. That I do not go to services, that frequently. That I gave up the kashrut I used to keep. My connection right now is to the ideas, is to the ideals. The idea of tikkun olum repairing the world, rings very strong to me. The ideals born out of text study, the need to question, the curiosity, the desire for understanding and the knowledge that the ‘truth’ is multifaceted. And the faith. The faith that there is something larger and that I will never know what it is and will always question it but it will lead me to having faith in those around me.
I find the ‘hip’ Jewish blogs very inspiring. They are asking the right questions. They are striving for action. They are my community. So here’s a little round up of some share-worthy blogs.
Jewcy – They just set up a new page about Darfur. They have collected articles and first hand accounts and set up an action center. This initiative is also a collaboration with the Public theater who will be producing a play about Darfur. On their other pages I found out about the last Jew in Afghanistan and a link to an interesting article on a Tel Aviv fashion show advocating for the rights of women who’s husbands refuse to divorce them, making them trapped in their marriages. Each item of clothing (created by different designers and modeled by celebrities) told one woman’s story:
Dubbed the “Embalming Dress,” Naftali explained it was inspired by Pnina Rabi, 50, who is still waiting for a get 17 years after her husband, Menashe, threatened that “I won’t give you a divorce until you reach an age at which you cannot have children.”
It was a startlingly revealing design to represent a fervently Orthodox woman like Pnina, but Naftali defended her design. . .“This,” the designer said, “is my scream as a fashion designer.”
Jewschool – I got pointed to what may be the coolest magazine ever, Muslim Girl, really, It makes me with I was a Muslim teenager. They focus on eco-friendly kashrut and the new Brit Tzedek v’Shalom “Let’s Talk” initiative trying to bring awareness to the government on the importance of pushing for peace talks and a two state solution.
The Lilith Blog– has a couple postings on food as a Jewish feminist issue. The one on the ‘commandment’ to make challah reminds me of the summer I made challah almost every Friday night. Those of you who know how often I bake or cook now would be amazed at my dedication and joy, baking the challah, kneeing it, braiding it, brushing it with egg yolk, pulling out a piece of the dough to be burnt and throw away as millions of women had done before me.
The Bintel Blog – pointed me towards this video of Paula Abdul and a couple of Rabbis. They have also brought back the Bintel Brief (the advice column that began all advice columns). Now they have visiting experts like the current adviser Alan Dershowitz.
And finally, the Theater J blog brings videos of post show discussion, interviews with Israeli playwright Motti Lerner and more. One is up already, one going up tomorrow. (and why haven’t you seen Pangs yet?)