Here is the reflection I shared at Community Lunch last week-
One of the many things that I tell people when discussing Pardes is that I wanted to study here before I ever knew that Pardes existed.
As a college student I started wearing a kippah publicly before I had any idea what halakha was – I didn’t know about keeping Shabbat or kashrut, or much at all about traditionally observant Jewish life – I simply wanted to express my Jewishness.
This led me to meet Orthodox Jews for the first time, and I began to adopt Jewish traditions in my life, as I learned of them – I began to keep Shabbat and Kashrut, and I began to wear tzitzit. But after a couple of years, I found myself questioning why I had incorporated these mitzvot into my life – were they meaningful to me personally, or had I come to adopt the lifestyle Continue reading