Sunday, July 15, 2007

Some quick words following Shabbos

Continuing in the vein of the previous post, here's some more inspirational stuff. (In third grade my teacher, Mrs. Ring, would always tell us not to use the word "stuff" because all it represented was Thanksgiving. I'm sorry Mrs. Ring).

Rabbi Gordon was one of only a few Bochurim with a beard when he was growing up in New York in the forties. He and a friend once went on the train, and the entire car (the people therein) stopped whatever they were doing to stare at two young men with beards. It was simply unheard of. Then in the sixties all the hippies started to grow them, but back in the forties? For a Jew to proclaim his religion? To follow in the footsteps of his fathers? And now look at us. So far, thank G-d, no anti-semitism. It's got to be weird to be stopped in the street by someone wearing a black hat and jacket (in 98 degree heat) and asked if you're Jewish. Someone even asked us if we had horns! (OK, I made that up, but it could have happened. This is Kansas for crying out loud.)

What I'm trying to say is, there's no longer any need to be ashamed of being Jewish, no reason to hide your identity. Just say it loud and clear and people respect you. This is America!

Sorry, this is getting soppy. I'm sorry. It's late, I'm tired, tomorrow will be better.

As we always end Farbrengens (Chassidic gatherings) with, "Tomorrow will be totally different!" And sometimes it actually is.