One thing that bothers me about modern Judaism is the continuous shift to the strict and serious. When my father was a kid and when I was a kid you checked the ingredients and then ate it. People would eat a tuna sandwich in a restaurant. And they were religious Jews. Now it’s too easy to be religious, so they heap on the requirements. Used to be tough enough just to not work on Shabbat.
Today if it doesn’t have the best (out of many) hashgacha you don’t eat it, and you burn down the butcher shop if they don’t use the right hechsher. You examine an esrog with a loupe and you have to be the last and the loudest to finish kriyat shma.
What does it take to make a kosher succah?
Are they adding new rules every year?
Or did Moses really whip out a level when pitching a tent?
Actually, I’m talking 20 years ago. I don’t know what the hell goes on today. Talk about 10 foot poles…
Not to mix it up too much – but do you find that the more ‘black’ the congregation, the nastier the people are to you. When my dad passed away, my brother and I went to daven down the block in a shteeble. We both felt so uncomfortable that we switched to the only conservative shul in Flatbush. (And they had actual black people sitting there, by the way) Just to get away from the oppression – imagined or otherwise. This is the reason that I like Chabad. They actually seem to like people. It’s like important to them to be friendly. What a concept!
Oh, and I once went to a shul (not even a black one) and some old croak came over to me to complain that it’s not the proper respect to enter his shul without a tie.
What do you make of that? Like God telling Moshe to take his shoes off, no? Yo, kiss the pinky, whitebread!