Why Don’t You Dive In?

A conversation with my wife a few days ago– or, me talking and her listening:

You know what my problem is? I don’t go whole hog. I’m talking specifically about my spiritual life, but it probably applies to everything else, too. I’m all witchy or all Jewish, and yet I can’t commit fully. Like my altar supplies. Or my mezuzah. Or even Shabbat candle holders! I can’t seem to take the plunge and buy ¬†the things I need to do good ritual work. So I’m stuck in this “in between” place. Where I am beyond beginner but not in the place of true spiritual belonging. And it’s the same with working with others: I want to be a Jew but I’m too afraid to go to temple. I want to be witchy but I’m too afraid to go to festivals. I want to do things by myself that I actually need help with. But I’m so afraid.

“Why don’t you dive in?”

I’m afraid of being judged, laughed at, rejected. Like, what if I spend all this money and time on Pagan and Jewish things for our home and life and then it turns out that Judaism and Paganism don’t work for me? What if I’m meant to be Buddhist (or Quaker, or Taoist, or Hindu, or nothing, or everything)? Then I will have wasted all of my time and energy and money on things I can’t even use.

“You won’t know any of those things until you dive in.”

I know! So. I’ve made a list of things I need for my altar and just for being a witchy Jew in general, and I’m going to buy these things. And you’re going to help me by telling me that it’s okay to spend money. And by reminding me that it’s not about the destination, it’s about the journey. And to not worry so much because it will all be okay.

Interfaith Connection

In my last few posts I’ve been talking about prayer. And as you know, I’ve decided to create my own prayer book. But I haven’t really talked about what prayers I want in the book. I wanted it to be clear that I intend this book to be an interfaith prayer book. It will include pagan prayers/rituals, but that’s certainly not the only thing I will focus on in my project.

My commitment to an interfaith life stems primarily from my relationship with my wife. I consider myself a partner in an interfaith marriage because while I am on this wild spiritual path that as yet does not have a label, Kourtney is agnostic. So I have to make sure that while I am becoming secure in my spiritual beliefs I’m not encroaching upon hers. My family also holds a myriad of traditions and beliefs that differ from my own, but I don’t believe they are right or wrong, just different (unless their beliefs condone human rights violations, of course). But even beyond that, I’ve always been committed to an interfaith dialogue. I think it’s vital for our society to see the value of other beliefs and traditions, I’ve worked with many interfaith programs and groups as an adult to keep myself open and also to connect with other faith workers on a deeper level. The work can be hard but it’s so worth it.

interfaith peace logo

It’s true that this book is primarily for me. But it’s also for those who come after me, who might find value in what I have written. Who am I to say exactly what path they should choose? Isn’t it beneficial in some way to have a sprinkling of many things? isn’t there some wisdom to be gleaned from all faiths? I think so.

7 Facts About Me

Since this is a new blog, and some of my new readers don’t really know who I am, I thought I’d do a fun facts post. Here are 7¬†facts about me!

  • I graduated from a women’s college.

Yes, they still exist! I graduated from Mills College in Oakland, California in 2013. Going to Mills was and amazing experience, and it’s the reason for the next two facts about me. Continue reading