I don’t know how to be Jewish

For my readers who are beginners at Judaism: I know that you sometimes wonder when you will “know enough” and that sometimes you feel intimidated by Jews who have generations of experience behind them. This is a wonderful, honest, forthright account by a women who was born Jewish and is very much like many people who will see at synagogue. We never stop learning, even the rabbis, especially the rabbis.

Oy Vey Out Loud

History is Always Complicated

I was born into a UK Liberal Jewish family. At the time, my Shul was a member of ULPS (United Liberal and Progressive Synagogues), an organisation now known as Liberal Judaism. I think I had a baby blessing – I can’t actually remember:-) I remember going to Shul in North London now and then when I was very young, usually for Passover. The Communal Seder meal has a smell and taste that’s been the same in all the Shuls that I’ve attended:-) Boiled eggs, salt water, salmon of some kind, often cold, and of course matzos.

When I was four, we moved to South Wales, and started attending the ‘local’ Reform Shul in Cardiff – only 15 miles away. I had my Bat Mizvah at Cardiff, and then did it all over again in London in the Liberal Shul because that’s where most of our Jewish…

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Rabbi Ruth Adar is a teaching rabbi based in San Leandro, CA. She has many hats: rabbi, mom, poodle groomer, and ham radio operator K6RAV. She blogs at https://coffeeshoprabbi.com/ as the Coffee Shop Rabbi.

4 thoughts on “I don’t know how to be Jewish”

  1. The last sentence of this blog post mentioned me waiting for what pops out of the blue into my inbox. A very short time later, I got an invite from my Shul to a series of three Bensching workshops! I went to the first one last night, and it was very enjoyable. I did realise that I have a learning gap here – none of the thanksgiving prayers were at all familiar to me. We always do the three barochot before dinner on Friday evening, but never anything afterwards. G-d obviously listened to my question, and sent me a whole bunch of answers – from Rabbi Ruth, from my own Shul, and also from Chabad.org:-)


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