Monday, August 17, 2009

Nu, what type of Jew is Michaltastik?

I thought I'd take a minute or so to talk about the great divide we have in Orthodoxy. I am in a unique position as I really straddle this divide. I mean, my music tastes include the secular Israeli pop group, Hadag Nachash AND Lipa Schmeltzer, the chasidic/chareidi pop singer. Most of my friends (and two of my three rabbis) are yeshivish but, I consider myself Modern Orthodox. This past Shabbos, I was in Flatbush almost Boro Park with a family where the women wore turbans. I davened in one of those shuls where there's not even a balcony, the women are upstairs but it's not a balcony. They had a hole in the floor so that the women could hear the service. The week before, I was in Riverdale. Yes, Riverdale, famed for Avi Weiss, the controversial rabbi who's trying to sneak women rabbis into Orthodoxy. I even davened the two Maarivs at HIR. I mean, wow, talk about refusing to nail myself down Jewishly!

However, I'm happy with this vareity I have going on. Nu, where do I stand? Well, I consider myself Modern Orthodox. However, I don't think I'm a regular Modern Orthodox Jewish girl. I don't particularly identify with the Avi Weiss types. For example, I don't have a TV. I hold some really yeshivishah type chumrahs. I definitely don't dress Modern Orthodox. So, I call myself Modern Orthodox Machmir or Modern ORTHODOX, as opposed to MODERN Orthodox. I am often criticized by those to the right of me as if there is only ONE type of Modern Orthodox. No, no, no... Let me respond....

I don't have a TV, but I'll watch other people's TVs rather freely. I don't want it right there because then I would watch it all the time and I don't want that. I would go to the movies, but how often would I do that? Not very often. I definitely don't go out to clubs or push the limits of tznius, something that those to the left of me do. Those to the left of me are looking for every possible heter and lenient ruling to go by. I do not do this. Nu, you're yeshivish then, right? NOPERS! Why not? Well, let's see, I will listen to secular music if it's reasonably clean. I don't want to marry and support a kollel guy and I, in fact, do not agree with this whole thing, kolllel for an eternity not followed by becoming a rabbi as a profession. You see? I'm not so easily pinned down.

Ok, that being said, I"m going to have some breakfast and I'll be back to post: The Great Divide: that is, the great Jewish divide down the middle of Orthodoxy.

1 comment:

  1. There are more people than you'd think who fit into your niche...I'm probably the same as you hashkafa-wise, except for the fact that I did grow up in a yeshivish family. (And I think I'd feel out of place and uncomfortable in Riverdale. Though my mother attended Stern College and actually had Avi Weiss as a teacher--said he was an excellent teacher, but that he's gone way to the left since then.)