10Q is a project that sends you a question every day during the Days of Awe. You respond and then the answers go into a virtual lockbox for the next year. You don't have to be Jewish to participate by any means, but the calendar does run on the Hebrew calendar. I have two responses I want to share with you.
Wow. Intense... I think I've always had a Jewish perspective when it comes to thinking about actions, I just didn't know it until a couple years ago. Human emotions are very complex and I think Judaism honors that much more than Christianity. Honestly, I hate doing the whole compare and contrast thing with the religions, but sometimes that is just what happens. I was happy and I celebrated with the rest of my country when Osama Bin Laden died. That was our natural reaction. We didn't stop to think about it. That's just how we felt. Judaism honors natural human inclination. But the next day we think about it a little more, and it is sad that a human life was lost. Our enemy is gone but so is part of G-d's creation. We can be sad and happy at the same time. Part of the reason we all celebrated was because a dark period in our nation's history ended with Bin Laden's death. We have every reason to celebrate. Certainly, terrorism has not come to an end, but a major leader in the movement can no longer lead or cause harm to us. So I think the celebration comes from the era dying not so much that individual person.
Today, I don't think I am conscious of "this is the Jewish perspective on X event." I think my perspective just naturally agrees with the Jewish one. Well, that's pretty easy when the Jewish perspective can be one of a hundred things. But you know what I mean.
So, the only goals I achieved this year were my Jewish ones. Oy. I don't know if this is bad or good. Technically, I am working toward getting something published, but I've been working on it since March. Things keep getting in the way. I don't know if it will ever happen. I haven't even finished the article yet, so there is no publishing possibility in sight. I have no intentions of taking the GRE again. I've become completely disenfranchised from the concept of standardized testing.
I know the prayer service. In fact, at Hillel's summer shabbat in July, I was the one reminding everyone of the order of things, saying things like "Now we remain standing for the hatzi Kaddish." I didn't mean to memorize the Reform Hillel service; it just happened. I don't need a transliteration anymore because I can read Hebrew. I think I went above and beyond in achieving that goal. Well, maybe I originally meant that I wanted to memorize the service. I know the basic order but I truly think it's better not to memorize everything because then I am more engaged in the prayers. I have to think to participate.
If you've been reading my blog over the last month, you know that I found a synagogue and a rabbi to convert me. Check.
I am excited for the next 10 questions to be sent out, even though it can be difficult to answer some of them. Some of the questions and my responses are a bit to personal too share here. But Judaism gets personal.
Do you 10Q?