Sunday, December 25, 2011

"Religious"

I hate labels. I've been on a personal journey for a few years now- learning not to be judgmental. Conditioning myself not to judge others' words or actions, to try and understand where they're coming from instead of instinctively condemning them.

My most recent advance in learning how not to judge is to try and get rid of as many labels as I can. I know that many people think labels are necessary in order to function in society. I personally don't. I think people should just be able to be

I was talking to a friend of mine today about the Orthodox community and the labels we use to classify people. "Religious." "Not religious." Most of the time, in my experience, I've noticed that those labels revolve around four observances: Shabbos, Kashrut, Appearance (Skirts for girls, Kippahs for boys), and Shomer Negiah. I've noticed, and it has increasingly made me angry, that the people in the Orthodox community judge someone as "religious" or "not religious" based on whether they keep all, or one, or two, or three of these observances. 

No one has the right to judge your level of religiosity. Especially not based on just four categories. Or five, or six, or seven. Don't let anyone dictate to you what your relationship with God is, because your relationship with God is exactly that- your relationship with God.

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