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May 27, 2009


I'm breaking my proud lurking tradition to ask if you've read "Yentl's Revenge"? I think you'd really enjoy it. Thanks for the interesting perspective-- as a progressive Jewish person trying to find my own footing as I raise my kids, I can really relate. Over and out.

I have not! I'll check it out!

Weirdly enough, a childhood friend and I watched Yentl about thirty times over the years. I guess when we got bored of horror movies, we switched to Streisand. Go figure.

I love that you're feeling all of this and that it's working in such good ways for you. XO

Can I just tell me how much I enjoy reading about your experience? I think you are the only one I've ever read who also converted but not because she married a Jew. It's a unique thing and so interesting to read about from another perspective.

Hit Print. Carry to Beit Din. Done. I know it's a bigger deal than that (my mom converted when I was being bat mitzvahed) but I think its great to hear about your faith and fit with Judaism in your voice, not in some overly academicized or formalized term-papery way.

I don't see irony in it at all. There's faith and there's practice, and while the practices of Judaism are quite different than what you grew up with in Kansas, the essential faith in God is the same.

The third key element of any organized religion is community, and I deeply hope that you find a community in your new town that feels like coming home.

Your experience gives me hope, Jo.

My story is different from yours in some ways, similar in others -- too complicated to describe here. Let's just say I feel like I'm wandering in the desert right now.

Knowing that you've found your way back "home" after a similar experience helps me immensely. Thank you for sharing it.

thank you for sharing this-you put it so beautifully. I think my childhood expeience mirrored yours in many ways- where unfortunately, I saw those who professed "faith" as using it as some kind of badge to legitiize their being hateful. As an "adult" ( still feels weird to say that), I;ve used my religious studies time well, gone through my own theological crisis, and I've decided whatI believe. I am fine with that not lining up with any particular kind of church, bt I see the use of religion, for a sense of community and tradition (psychological benefits)- and so I've gone with Chrsitianity. Different apprach, but I think we are coming from somewhat the same place. For me, whether God is only an idea or a reality, and in whatever form, it doesn't affect my faith- "God" stands for something larger than that.
We have alist of family values in our house now- te things that we hold as universal truths, and we've phrased them in ways that I think they are more or less suppoted by any faith, though we intend to use Christianity as our concrete tool for imparting them. As the kids get older, I hope that I can find the right balance in teaching them the ambiguity of it all.
So again, thanks for sharing- it's really cool to know that there are other people out there who get where I am at.Best wishes

Ah, I'm just starting to write my essay, too! If you need/want anyone to give yours a second glance you know how to reach me. I promise not to plagiarize you. Too much.

Also still have that Anita Diamant book if you want to check it out...

Best. sentence. ever.

You said:
" It became so deeply uncool in my eyes after my experiences in Christian church circles in Kansas -- just emblematic of an anti-intellectual blind belief that allowed unscrupulous leaders to control people, and also saved some of those same people from having to do a whole lot of uncomfortable thinking."

I spent my first 21 years in Kansas. I know what you're saying. (I stand up and give you a big Amen to that! Heh.)

feeling just full of love and joy for you jo! this is just awesome, in the true sense of the word. will there be something public that i could come to? is there some way we could celebrate together? i'm thrilled you've found your way home.



also, isn't it funny how similar some of the rites are too? trixie just got dunked, quite literally!

I can't tell you how cool this all sounds to me. I'm a bit envious. Can't go there but it tempts me. Love Jesus though so no dice.

Not whole hog anyway. We go to services sometimes. I am a visitor (even in Church--I'm a visitor everywhere). Sometimes services are amazing. Simchat Torah!

This is a beautiful post, especially the last paragraph.

Those kind of nightmares are strange. It's just telling you what you care about the most. Are you in a specific community--reform, reconstruction, conservative, orthodox? It sounds like reconstruction? I know that there are lots of other options as well.

Is it shovuot or something? I don't know how to spell that! Anyway, happy shovuot, if it is shovuot.

how about we go to kohl's, marta? :)

perfect. and really, i have found perfectly nice lipstick at cvs.

smooches to you.

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