Saturday, November 29, 2008

Today We are All Chabadniks

I found this entry today on Jewlicious.  I agree with its ideas that we should all be united as Jews, rather than worrying about whether we're converts or Reform or Chassids.  To many, we are all the same, despite our sub-cultural differences.

The article also points out another personal connection: the rabbi and his wife are my age.  And her glasses are very similar to mine.

Friday, November 28, 2008

Another amendment

Reports are now that there were five victims at the Chabad House. The rabbi and his wife were American, as was one other casualty. Two of the dead were Israeli.

We should all say Kaddish, listen to "Imagine", and try to find a solution.

Addendum to my previous post

To be edited in when I'm at my computer:

There should be no honor in dying for one's religion; the honor is in living one's tradition.

Mobile blogging can be a pain. Even on an iPhone.

Baruch ata Adonai, Melech Ha-Olam, Dayan Ha-Emet

Islamic terrorists stormed Mumbai, India, taking over 10 buildings.  Most of the locations were associated with Western culture. The last article I read, over 175 people were dead.

One of the buildings that was chosen was the Chabad House. Two of the people who died were the rabbi and his wife, and I think 5 others from the Jewish center, all Israeli citizens. The cook managed to escape with the rabbi's two year old son. It is very sad.

Even though I'm not yet officially Jewish, and even though I tend to disagree with Chabad, I feel a personal connection. I imagine their Jewish community to be somewhat like mine: small and remote, but welcoming. A place for Jews to get refreshed by familiar traditions amidst a people who live very differently. I know the Jewish community in India, like the one here in Alaska, is very small.

I hope this situation doesn't discourage those who survived from their faith. I hope those who are also in small communities draw together, rather than dispursing out of fear. And I hope that the memories of the rabbi, his wife, and the others who died will be a blessing.

I also hope no martyrs arise from this situation. Religious fundamentalism is dangerous. We need no repeats; we have all suffered enough.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Interview With An Orthodox Jewish Survivor of Anorexia and Bulimia - Features

Interview With An Orthodox Jewish Survivor of Anorexia and Bulimia

A fascinating story.  Some of the things she talks about I recognize.  I found it through this post, which also tells stories I recognize.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Zach Braff might make Aliyah?

Zach Braff is one of those famous Jews I've had ambitions of writing about.  I think that he's smart, and he's funny, and that's all it takes to make me a fan, really.  I'd heard some rumblings before about his Jewishness, but I didn't want to speculate.

As it happens, he's very much Jewish.  Recently, he gave an interview to Haaretz about his experiences in Tel Aviv and what it's like for him to be in the Jewish community.  The way he talks about community is very interesting to me.  I'm also excited about the idea that he might write and make a movie about an American Jew in Israel.  That's something I'd really like to see from someone like him.  His comedy is very slapstick, but it's also very intelligent and sensitive.

Another thing that I find interesting, as someone who is very soon to convert, is how he talks about not being a minority when he's in Israel.  One of the reasons that it sticks with me is because he talks about he always felt like he was in the minority living in the United States, but he also points out how the communities he's lived had large Jewish communities.  I hope to someday be lucky enough to live in a place with a lot of other Jewish folks.  I'd also love to go to Israel someday.

Oh, and lest you think I read Haaretz and believe that I'm smarter than I am, I found this story on Mixed Multitudes.

Monday, November 17, 2008


I don't know if I should call this a blog, because even though it comes in weekly installments, it's not really just that.  is an attempt to animate the Torah, essentially.  Each week, the new parshat comes up, always with a new commentator.  I've been enjoying it since Bereshit, although my favorite so far is Lech Lecha.  I highly recommend stopping by every Monday for a quick dose of something to think about.