Sunday, January 5, 2014
A Safety Net:
In my pilot post I failed to mention why I chose to blog. Here it is: I want to blog because there are so many like me, Jewish Modern Orthodox kids who fall through the cracks somehow, who leave their "Jewish bubbles," and enter a world of drugs, partying, religious confusion, forgetting about the 18 years of Jewish education their parents devoted so much to instill.
I will come right out and say it. I am blogging to be selfish (please, allow me to be selfish for a moment). I recently read a study about how across the Jewish gamut of Reform, Conservative, Modern Orthodox, and Ultra Orthodox, the only consistent population growth of religiously affiliated children (who grown to become religiously affiliated adults) are the Ultra Orthodox. The radical radical decline of affiliation because of assimilation, intermarriage, and overall lack of interest, has shaped a very different future of Judaism. This is why I blog. I am blogging so that I do not become extinct, and because I believe the face of Judaism cannot only be the face of an Ultra Orthodox Chassid in Borro Park or Breslov in England.
I am blogging so that together, you and I can keep me safe; I am actively choosing not to become a statistic in the fall of Modern Orthodoxy. I do not want for my grandchildren to leave the faith because of my carelessness, because of things I could have done better, more meticulousness. I do not want to hold a funeral for my Jewish values, and lower my morals in a casket, donning sackcloth over unmet expectations laid to rest beneath two feet of earth.
Right now you stand at a crossroad with a decision to make: You have the privilege to read my personal diary entries- the confusion, moral struggles, joy, love, tears- but that comes with the responsibility of acceptance and listening without judging. The choice is up to you: Do you have the capacity to empathize with a nineteen year old who is simultaneously burdened and obliged by the expectations of her religious community, parents, peers, childhood friends, family, God?
Whether you read or not, I will keep writing, because I sure have a story to tell. You never know, it may be just be the most read anthology in history- next to the Bible of course.