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Why Interfaith Isn't Scary

We are an Heroic World People

Jewish identity is valuable, inspirational and transgenerational and I embrace it with all my heart. I am so secure in and connected to this identity, my place within the sacred web that extends to Chava and Adam (and perhaps even before) and forward to the time of the Moshiach, that I could even be called a person of faith.

I know who I am and where I stand in relation to my people and my heroic tradition.

That web, however, should not be confused with a chain (in either sense of the world) anymore: a unidirectional flow from past through present to future, just as the Jewish people are no longer only the "people of Judah", but a world people, living not only in one place but nearly every place. We as a people are intimately interwoven across both space AND time. Now, in today's world, that weaving, that web extends not only outward in all directions to our people across space and time, but also above and below, and our fate is intimately bound with the fate of all peoples.

We saw the idea of the global village long before that term became trendy: My house shall be a house of prayer for all people, says the prophet Isaiah.

If we look at the mystical Kabbalistic drawing of the 231 gates (22 points on a circle, representing the building blocks of cosmic consciousness, the Hebrew letters, each connected to the other) as 2 dimensional we understand our identity as Jews, Jewish people. If we look at the 231 gates as multidimensional object, infinitely more lines, possibilities and connections emerge. This is not threatening to the Jewish people.

Our history has proven repeatedly, overwhelmingly our resilience and ability to incorporate new threads. That is the miraculous, heroic story of our people.

Abraham Isaac Kook wrote: Life dawned that we might be heroic and truly free.

Heroic and truly free people are not threatened by welcoming fellow travelers, nor of loving them, nor celebrating with them, nor throwing open our doors, our books, our arks or our hearts.

The unity of creation points to place that is even beyond any difference, distinction or separation. That is the place from which I aim to live. It is fun, interesting and meaningful to celebrate my particulars and they are also a means to the end: a place of such deep oneness we don't even have words. So what's to be scared of, threatened by, or rejected?