Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Dizzy from the Women

All this talk about women of, by, and for the Wall has me dizzy.  I truly do not get it. I have been religious all of my life, but did not attend a yeshiva or day school.  I received an outstanding education in Jewish studies at the Baltimore Hebrew College, and everything else I picked up along the way, via NCSY, from my husband, etc. 

So I ain't no scholar.

But I do consider myself a deeply religious person. 

I believe that the Torah was given to us as a way of life and that God knew what He was doing when he gave it to us. 
I believe that it offers us a way to live that works in every generation, forever, and is not time-bound.
I believe that God watches us and waits for us to ask Him for help. 
I believe that the Torah he gave us offers us a fulfilling, meaningful, and rich way of life.

So...that said....I believe that as a woman I have a vital role - to show the world that living a Torah way of life makes one charitable, kind, wise, resourceful and courageous and gives us a firm and secure place in the world.

See, I believe that Hashem has carved out incredibly rich roles for men and for women.  Because they are (here's a shocker) different, have different skill sets, different bodies, and different approaches to the world.

So not only do I not WANT to have a man's role, I believe that I'm not supposed to, that God does not want me to, and that if I can't figure out how to make my life meaningful with the role that I have, and if I keep looking over the mechitza and wondering why I can't be more like the men, well, then, that's MY problem, not the Torah's problem.

So when I see a woman in a tallis and tefillin, I feel like saying to her, "What are you really looking for?  There isn't enough in Torah for you to feel fulfilled?  You have to wear a tallis to feel better about yourself?" 

So on  the one side I look at these women and feel frustrated.  And on the other side, I look at the women in the Chumash and feel small - they are heroic, they are brave, they protect their loved ones, and they speak out.  They are not quiet, by any means.  I mean, Sara even laughed at God, sheesh that took nerve.

And what are we?  Are we even close to being as courageous as they were?  The men and women in Chumash were true partners, even more so than some couples today, I'll bet.  And those women at the Kotel - do they think they are being brave?  To me they are just confused and totally missing the point.

So that's where I stand.  I'm sure that some of you will disagree and say I'm old fashioned.  The thing is, the typical religious woman today is so NOT old fashioned that it is hard to explain - we are educated, we work, we raise families, we take care of homes, we help out our friends and family, we help the community.  We make the world what it is.  I don't think there is a husband/father out there who won't agree that the women in his life hold his life together.

We have a role that is so "meta" that people might somehow miss it - we are providing the balance, the caring, the love, and the warmth that keeps the world going.

Go women! 

No comments:

Post a Comment