While on my vacation, I kept up, as best I could, with my on-line life (much to my wife’s chagrin!) A theme that popped up was about the individualistic nature of today’s Jewish young people. They, it seems, want to know what Judaism and the Jewish community can do for them as individuals. What can the “we” do for “me”? Okay, in the context of the American ethos of hyper-individualism (sort of an extension of Ayn Rand’s concept of selfishness as a virtue), American Jews seem to strive for individual fulfillment in their Jewish identity. How does this inform the work we do as Jewish educators? How do we teach that “us” matters?
We’ve been mulling over the apparent failure of contemporary Jewish education. We’ve been trying to figure out how to make being a Jew in the 21st century meaningful to the individual. Maybe we are focusing on the wrong thing. I’m not sure if the Jews of the future who are growing up today hear God the way we or our parents do: through ritual, B’nai Mitzvah,
The lost souls of
Who knows? Maybe our children will find God living on