Friday, October 30, 2009

New Jews Get Love On CNN

A friend (update, my cousin did as well) just passed a long a really interesting article on that explains 'New Jews'. It is absolutely worth a read.

The article tackles a lot of the issues that take place in generational shifts, such as the loss of power of the previous generation and the lessened impact of the institutions attached to that generation. Here is a taste:

When Moses came down from Mount Sinai about 3,300 years ago, he couldn't have seen these Jews coming.
A blogger writes about how one of Judaism's holiest days ended, for him, in a strip club, while elsewhere a guy strolls into a tattoo parlor requesting a Star of David. Two women exchange wedding vows in a Jewish ceremony, and hipsters toss back bottles of HE'BREW, The Chosen Beer. A full-time software developer prepares to lead a group in Jewish prayer, as a PhD candidate in Jewish thought pens a letter criticizing Israel's policies.
Meet the "New Jews," as some call them: pockets of post-baby boomers -- or more accurately Generation X and Millennial (Gen Y) Jews -- who are making one of the world's oldest known monotheistic faiths and its culture work for them and others in a time when, more than ever, affiliation is a choice.
"I could wake up tomorrow and say, 'I don't want to be Jewish.' There would be no social, political or economic consequences," said Shawn Landres, the 37-year-old co-founder of Jumpstart, a Los Angeles-area organization that pushes forward out-of-the-box ideas in the Jewish world. "It's true for the first time in thousands of years that we can build the identities we want."
Many of those at the forefront of innovative Jewish construction are rabbis, religious educators, people who know their stuff. But they're not interested in foisting labels on people -- like the denominational terms Reform, Conservative or Orthodox -- nor do they want to perpetuate the pressures that come with fitting into religious, political and social molds.

Clearly these feelings have a huge impact on those of previous generations as well. Last night I spoke with the Rabbi and President of a local congregation who are well aware of the need to support our generation as we create and foster a new sense of community, culture, and identity.

Next Dor is looking to be a St. Louis response to these very issues and from a sociological perspective, we are all pretty interested to see where it fits in.

Read the rest of the article here.

1 comment:

M-teen said...

now that's what i'm talking about. it's all about the new jews.