Lisa,

I agree with you totally that it is a matter of perspective.

I think jewish unity is possible, but that that requires a long term
strategy, short term tactical manouvres, and both individual and
collective participation of Individual jews and jewish religious
communities, groups, networks, organisations.

Like you do I am somewhere inbetween pessimism and optimism,
because I see division, competition, and like you too a very small
percentage who are actually associated with sinagogues and
Jewish organisations.

But I believe Judaism and the Jews are in the world with a purpose,
as people between the people, as teachers, as stewards or
caretakers of the (cultural) heritage of the world, together or in
cooperation with the brightests and smartests of others peoples.

Jewish unity is needed and necessary to reach Tikkun olam;
"repairing the world" or "perfecting the world."
After that you can reach real Tsedaka, justice and love towards
your fellow being, and chesed (loyalty, unity and unconditional
love). I met an Israeli woman in the Arnhem Shul durig a Yad
Vashem ceremony. I talked with her about Israel and the Israeli-Palestinian
conflict, and she told me that she believed that only the women, Israeli and Palestinian can solve the ongoing conflict, because the men are stuck in old patterns.

In Dutch Yiddish you have the expression Esjet Cajiel, a powerful
woman (31, The Book of Proverbs, verses 10).
In Judaism you have the power of the matriarchy next to the
Jewish patriarchy, when you unite the intellectual, spiritual and
political power of Jewish men and women you get Judaism.
When you unite the Jewish Diaspora communities with the
Israeli society you get a very vital people, a light in the world
among the nations. One of the most difficult and important
task is to built a bridge between Diaspora jews and Israeli's.

In my country I see a clear distinction between Dutch jews
and Israeli's, they are differant, but both jews.
They do not have the same culture, not always the same
views, but they go the same parties, concerts, exhebitions,
shuls, universities and community centres.

Many jews are individualistic yes, and many are not connected
to judaism in an organised form (religious or non-religious),
but they feel connected to Judaism in their hearts and minds.
I saw it in the eyes and the words of those two friends of mine
and in their individual keeping of Jewish traditions and
in their relationships with their partners and one of them
in the upbringing of her son. (due to me you are a jew and
this is judaism and jewish culture. Your father is christian and this is
your christian heritage. She cooks Yiddish and celebrates Chanukah.
The intellectual, rational jewish approach!)

Jewish unity or any unity starts with the individual!

Pieter


Last edited by Redhead; 01/04/09 06:34 PM.