Erev Shabbat Online? say what?

It seems like the number of people searching to convert to Judaism has grown over the past few years. It's a common question on many Jewish sites. Places like OneShul and PunkTorah have taken the Jewish community and put it on the web.  There are even sites to convert to Judaism online, although a Beit Din is still required and a local community is recommended.But what if you have a community, and can't get out of the home? Or want to follow a full liturgy alongside home ritual? Or, like me, … [Read more...]

The Charter for Compassion

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One thing I love about the Jewish mindset is the lack of punishment-as-motivator. That is, we are to do things to make the world a better place, and to make ourselves better people. Not to avoid punishment or to gather "heavenly rewards".Tikkun Olam is the idea that our job is to "repair" creation. As if a mirror has shattered and it's our job to pick up all the pieces. The idea is that we have to literally DO something. The whole "I'll pray for you" isn't enough.While the below isn't a … [Read more...]

Questions, Please!

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What questions would you ask someone who is leaving Christianity for another faith?Here are some I've gotten:1) WHY? 2) What did your parents think/say/do? 3) How long does it take to convert to Judaism? 4) Are you allowed to have short hair/color your hair as a Jew? 5) From a friend, "What do you see as the point of religion? Is there justification within Judaism? What are you striving for? Is the goal to gain Heaven? Is there understanding that your own sinfulness requires … [Read more...]

Fundamentalism / Seeing What We Want

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I am converting to Judaism. I have wanted to since I was a child and the desire has only grown as I have aged. It's where my soul belongs, and that's really the bottom line. If I were to strip away the intellectual side, and my experiences with Christianity (which have, despite some of my statements, been positive at times), and my experiences with other Christians, I would still have a strong inner desire to be with the Jewish people. The Torah has always felt right to me. It is my … [Read more...]

The Things You’d Never Have Told Ruth

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Nearly everyone who has read the Bible has heard of the story of Ruth. It's a lovely story, and has a good narrative. Ruth's story is both a romance and the epitome of the convert's story. The story goes like this:Naomi has a husband and two sons. They move out of Israel for better economic conditions.Her sons marry non-Jewish women.Her sons and her husband all pass away. The sons and their new wives don't yet have children.Naomi decides to return home to Israel. She tells both … [Read more...]

On Leaving Christianity

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So, I have discovered that when you formally make an announcement that you're converting to Judaism, it angers your friends who are fundamentalist/evangelical/not-practicing-but-still Christian. It is apparently more stressful for them to hear that you're rejecting Jesus-as-Messiah than to have you not believe in anything at all.But I'll save that for another post, eh?Right now, I want to talk about leaving Christianity. I was approached by a friend who says I'll soon be a part of … [Read more...]

Shabbat with the Kiddos

Courtesy of Wikimedia

I posted before about wanting to do Shabbat more often and have been more-or-less successful at doing that, especially for the past few weeks. My older children seem to enjoy it, despite it being foreign to them. I'm suprised at how easily they have embraced Shabbat traditions. It's been harder for me to get in the routine than for them, really. But they love it - special plates and a special dinner, lots of bread, usually some desserts, lighting the candles and praying over the wine (or grape … [Read more...]


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