I haven't really been blogging. I haven't felt much like it. It seems like my blog is read by first off not so many people. Also the people who are on my side seem to have issues of their own. One of my hopes with the blog was encompassed by the guest post written by "David." The idea is that I am a real person and I'm not that different from all of you who may be FFBs looking down your nose at me. So, I was encouraged to read this story on the unpious blog which is a blog written by those who have gone off the derech. Mostly, the guy starting it and most of the posters are FFBs from a Chasidic background. However, this story was written by a BT who went off.
Furthermore, I would like to QUOTE one of the commenters, as this story and then this commmenter encompass so much of my frustrations. Der Bik comments, "Emes Rocker sez, “Why let some close minded people in the frum world turn you off to Torah?”
According to its own laws and traditions, Judaism can’t be practiced alone.
Other faiths make a big deal out of hermits, or years spent in solitary prayer or meditation, or vows of silence.
Other faiths highly value people who deny themselves marriage, family, and even close, personal friendships, in the pursuit of spiritual goals.
But Judaism is an emphatically *communal* religion. You can’t just run off and live alone in some Himalayan cave and practice yiddishkeit in any meaningful way, or in any way resembling yiddishkeit as Jews understand it.
And so when Jews make life hellish for other Jews who want to practice yiddishkeit, their misbehavior is in many ways more destructive and farther-reaching than the misbehavior of, say, a Roman Catholic who makes life hellish for another Roman Catholic.
It is deeply dishonest of frum Jews to excuse the nasty behavior of other frum Jews by saying, “Religious Jews are people, too. You can’t expect them to be perfect!”
No sane, reasonable human being expects “perfection” of other human beings.
What people who’ve left frumkeit complain about isn’t *imperfection” among frum Jews.
What they complain about is frum Jews, again and again and again, knowingly and willfully and intentionally acting with full malice aforethought in ways that aggressively and grotesquely violate Torah’s most basic precepts in order to make life hellish for other Jews.
In other faiths, people believe that G-d judges and redeems them *individually*.
As Jews, we believe that G-d judges and redeems us as a *nation*, as a *people.*
In other words:
In Judaism, a few bad apples really can spoil the whole barrel."
Alll of this explains so much, my frustrations and difficulties with Judaism. Also, while I originally felt drawn to what I knew as the Old Testament or Torah, when you get into Judaism, you have all these rabbinic interpretations. I was lied to by kiruv people about the sexist nature of Judaism. I barely even have any frum friends. Most of my friends are either not Jewish or not frum. While I can't be upset at any one person that they did not become my friend, when I make friends very easily outside of Judaism, one has to wonder how I have not made made friends with FFBs other than a small number I met through school. Actually, not having made friends is only the beginning of the answer to a greater analysis of the situation.
The answer I believe lies in the FFB "in towner" mentality-culture-whatever you want to call it. It's the Brooklyn Arrogance that is not contained in Brooklyn. I live in a modern community in Queens where they all like to think they are Manhattan-types and I'm not good enough for them because I don't make good money. While ironically, most of the worst experiences I had came from Brooklyn in some way, it also seems all my friends are in Brooklyn.
There is a conflict of interest in the Brooklyn and Orthodox culture. While kiruv is pushed by some, the same group, as well as the non-kiruv types push this "FFB holier than thou" mentality. Now you can look at me and brush me off as a convert because you know, it's all my fault that I'm here and so on. However, Chavi Silver from this linked story is only one of so many who try to become observant and realize that Orthodox Judaism runs after them only to refuse to let them in. You bang your head against the wall. Finally, you wonder, "why am I here?" as I wonder. My many non-Jewish friends ask me, why I haven't just walked away. It's really a good question. The shul secretary lives a half a block from me and I see her walking her dog and used to stop and say hello, every time to segueway into a discussion of the fact that I should move. I get it. I'm not welcome in shul and you're telling me. I started walking fast by her so I she won't say hello to me. She seems to get that and no longer tries. I stopped going to shul. I am not welcome anywhere in the neighborhood. There aren't that many shuls and from each one, someone has let me know that I'm not welcome. It's obvious that the leadership has gotten together and made a pact that I am not welcomed anywhere. So, I stopped going. For a while I went away every shabbos, but around the tine I started back to school I slowed up on that. I started to stay home until now.
I don't really feel Jewish so much. Why should I when I meet people who spout off at the mouth that I'm "not a real Jew"? After all, my mother was not known to me to be Jewish. I was not raised Jewish and I had a Xmas tree growing up. Was I raised Xtian? NO. I mean I was raised about as Xtian as the twice a year pesach seder Chanukhah Jew who might even have bread at the seder... or more likely than that a bagel.
At every turn the Orthodox piss and moan about the intermarriage rates. They say, well, the only way to keep your kids Jewish is to raise them Orthodox. Yet, why should anyone? YOU WONT LET ANYONE IN!!!! That is, it is very hard to be let in to the schools and the community if you are not an FFB. Even a BT who has read this blog and is married to an FFB could not get her kids in to the schools she tried to apply to. The applications warn BTs by asking on them about your mother and grandmother... where did mommy go to Bais Yakov?
The holders of the keys to the Orthodox world continue to piss and moan that people are intermarrying. Something theese people are just not getting through their thick skulls is that the Reform don't care about intermarriage so much. Actually, they don't care to know about what the Orthodox are doing so much as the Orthodox sit and watch and talk about what all the other Jews are doing... "Look that Avi Weiss in Riverdale and his woman 'rabbi', look at what they are doing." "Look at these women rabbis in the Reform movement, look at what they are doing." "The Conservatives are ordaining women now, too. Look at what they are doing." Why, WHY, OH WHY, do the Orthodox even give a you know what? They are laughing and pointing at others for violating rules that are not even in the Torah.
I'm just so sick of this gross lack of morals. I'm sick of the nastiness. When people have me over to a Shabbos meal for the sole purpose of being wretchedly nasty to me, how can I not feel like I made a mistake?
I am not welcome here, this so much has been communicated to me.