here’s a shout out to the marist students I had the joy of teaching today in doc seanor’s world religions class. this post is my attempt to give y’all the answers to any test that the mischevous doc might throw your way. for those of you who were in the 11:30 class may the opening line, “on bagels…” live on forever! if y’all have any questions or what to know more about judaism feel free to email me at email@example.com. in the meantime…
a wisdom tradition
– not sure we really “hit” this point, but basically, Judaism is there to give us guidance through the complexity of human existence.
a legal and interpretive tradition
— which is why the version of Leviticus that I showed you has all those different commentaries from across the centuries.
a spiritual discipline
– which is why, yes, parker, we pray three times a day. it’s why we have shabbat, a palace in time when we attempt to leave the world unchanged, focusing on the blessings that we already have in our midst, like friends, family, food, and a roof over our heads.
– which is why we observe the festival of sukkot, when we dwell in booths and remember our sojourn through the desert on the way from egypt to canaan, reminding ourselves that, with god, we have everything that we need.
a social justice voice
– which is why, as a jew, i dedicate myself to leaving the world better than i found it, which is why davis academy students are given opportunities to do social justice work from kindergarten all the way until they graduate.
the faith of the prophets
– judaism has always been a tradition that speaks truth to power, that attempts to right the wrongs, that attempts to build a more fair and equitable world and society.
– which is why we passed around the “light up shabbat” cd, which is why jews love bagels, why we speak yiddish and hebrew, why we have our own forms of dance, cinema, literature, and beyond. it’s why you can hear my original jewish music under the tab “davis academy album.”
– which is why some of y’all got to do your project on jewish holidays. which is why we sounded the rams horn “tekia, shevarim, terua, tekia gedola!” and why i lead high holy day services at emory, which is why shabbat is my favorite holiday (because it comes every week and there’s no pressure).
– the only democracy in the middle east, the only place where women have equal rights to men in the middle east, the only place where you can be openly gay and not fear persecution. is israel perfect? no! but when it comes to israel we all need to be critical consumers of information and avoid rash generalizations!!
– doc told me he’s gonna quiz you on the hebrew alphabet (not really)! just in case…