Tuesday, May 15, 2012

The irony of being tifrosh min hatzibur

Lately, Ive been thinking a lot about why I stay.  I have a list of disagreements with the frum community--the bigotry, the arrogance, the materialism, the sheer unsustainability of the kollel lifestyle, the shoddy, overpriced workmanship (Builder excluded--he's an amazing contractor!), the Balkanization along sectarian lines...so, why I am still here?
Simply put, because these issues affect me on a very intellectual level.  For the most part, everyone I've run across--my in-laws, my neighbors, my former landlord, the people in the various shuls I've davened in--have been very nice and accepting towards me.  So, I've learned to smile a lot and keep the controversial topics for the blog.
And therein lies the irony.  I am separating myself from a community made up of very nice people.  True, I may fundamentally disagree with them on many levels, but as long as I wear the costume and keep my remarks non-committal, I can find acceptance.
For the most part.
To be continued...


  1. From what I've read here, you're not have a problem with Orthodox Judaism but with Orthodox Jews and there's a big difference.
    One of the big failings of Orthodoxy is that we're just like everyone else. Torah learning and practice is supposed to make a person more decent and ethical but we often miss that point.
    As a result we have decent people and jerks, just like everyone else. We're no worse but often no better.
    That's why lots of Orthodox people you know are great folks but you read about or hear about idiots all the time.
    Remember that we do what we do for God's approval, not man's. And then remember the second part of the mishnah you're blog is named after: in a place where there are no men (in the sense of people who stand up for what's right in Torah observance), be a man!

    1. @Mighty Garnel Ironheart:

      Wonderful observations. Many years ago I stopped trying to please the machine and decided to live my Jewish life in direct relationship to Hashem. Best decision I ever made! :)


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