Monday, December 19, 2005

UPS and the realization they delivered.

Esti is a dear friend of mine. She’s intelligent, talented and loyal to a fault. My conversations with her inevitably tend to turn into arguments. Not because we don’t respect each others opinions, but probably because we do.

Unlike me, she is technically ‘supporting’ her husband while he ‘learns’. While I admire a serious learner as much as the next guy, I don’t believe that any husband has the right to do it at his wife’s expense. Apparently my opinion wasn’t called for, and she successfully manages to earn what little bit she needs, being that she is so easily satisfied with the barest minimum. At the same time too, she is raising a family that is קע"ה growing at a remarkable rate. She is an amazingly calm mother, and her kids are some of the most adorable and lovable impish little rascals you’ll ever meet. But it has come to a point where I am literally begging her to go on birth control. Ironically, she is not theoretically against it – she just truly wants to have that large family – like the one she grew up in. I'm afraid that she will get there.

Working at home requires her to have a PC of course, yet amazingly she makes do without the internet. She’s dead set against it – and truthfully, knowing the ’net as well as I do – I can’t find it in my heart to encourage her to get it. But I read to her from my blog, and occasionally from others. They make for good kindle for some heated debates. She tends to have the quirkiest observations about life – and it is fun to hear her angle on things.

The other day we were once again discussing something, that seemed mighty important at the time, but it couldn’t have been that noteworthy – as I can’t seem to recall what it was about. Regardless of what it was, she suddenly commented with something that appears to be quite trivial – but it made me think. I sorta like it when that happens.

With the type of work she does, she tends to have deliveries coming and going from her home regularly. The other day she read an article about the majority her packages’ most frequent carrier – UPS. It mentioned that apparently their logo had a makeover some time ago, and most of the UPS trucks have had the newer version printed on their sides. But not all of them. The two versions are similar – and if one is unaware of the change, it is quite easy to miss. Esti tells me that she has these deliveries on a regular basis and never bothered looking at the little gold logo on the side of the truck, let alone noticing if there was anything new about it. But now that it was brought to her attention, it has become quite impossible for her not to notice each truck that goes by – and immediately take note of which logo it has emblazoned on its side.

There are things in life that we have accepted as the norm. Be it in matters of community issues, traditions, or of course – faith. They just pass us by, we take it for granted that it belongs to be done the way that it’s done - we don’t even notice. And then someone shines a flashlight in that direction.

First there is the discomfort of the glaring light. And then comes the uneasiness with the new world that was exposed.

There are many that believe they have come up with answers, just because it satisfies them on an intellectual level. All the while it leaves them feeling emotionally cast asea, and spiritually stripped bare. But they find it easier to go through life, believing that they understand.

The beauty of our world is in a large sense, the mystery behind it. There is no way we CAN understand it all, although there are many ways we can attempt to. Faith works for me. Simplistic faith. Faith isn't 'knowing' - but rather 'believing'. Where's the fun in certainty? Where is the adventure?

If ignorance is bliss – who is to say that ignorance is all that bad? I say – let’s embrace it. Let’s celebrate it. That innocent and simplistic straightforward faith that gives us contentment in our day to day lives - - while never diminishing the awe.


At December 19, 2005 12:47 PM, Blogger anonymous said...

"If ignorance is bliss – who is to say that ignorance is all that bad? I say – let’s embrace it. Let’s celebrate it."

The chassidiche mantra.

(Yes I know that's not what you meant, but it's striking that you can phrase things this way. Once you notice the glorification of ignorance, it's hard not to notice how it worms its way into discourse, like the UPS label.)

At December 19, 2005 1:57 PM, Blogger Hasidic Rebel said...

"First there is the discomfort of the glaring light. And then comes the uneasiness with the new world that was exposed."

Can it be.. is it possible.. no, perish the thought... but doesn't it really seem like Sheitel is finally acknowledging what her critics have been pointing out? That must be wrong. :-)

On a serious note, it is true, as Shlomo Hamelech said, "Yosef daas, yosef mach'ov." But I think most people would take knowledge over ignorance, as blissful as the latter might be. It is only in their ignorant state that they think ignorance preferable.

Alas, you are right, there are no answers. But, as I've been saying, it's the search that's important.

And now, let me point out some grammatical errors...

...just teasing. ;-)

At December 19, 2005 2:32 PM, Blogger Begreatfull said...

sometimes You have to take notice that things are CHANGING, Sadly some just perfer to live in Ignorants so they dont have to do any work, its eaiser to be in a comfortable place, than to take a step and do something about it.

At December 19, 2005 4:15 PM, Blogger Old Williamsburg said...

Here's to Sheitel admitting the truth. Clang.

We aren't all philosophers, and no we cannot understand the complexity of the world. Therefore, we should refrain from casting judgment and stereotyping, both which are among the negative qualities ubiquitous in Williamsburg.

At December 19, 2005 7:30 PM, Blogger Semgirl said...

Think you need to get your friend an "ignorant and proud of it sweatshirt" (or is that like not Tzniusdik, because of the wording on it, not just a plain blouse).

They are all the rage in my neighborhood.

At December 19, 2005 9:30 PM, Blogger Con Artistic said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

At December 19, 2005 9:31 PM, Blogger Con Artistic said...

Shietel, or shall a say TC, ignorance is bliss, yeah, I finally agree with you. If people would be ignorant to this mantra their life would be bliss and learned.

Seriously though, while in many cases ignorance might be an advantage in most cases it’s a huge disadvantage, the case you chose to portray is neither, and can be successfully argued both ways.

Why does a mantra that can be rooted to a true event such as when knowledge actually brings misery be equated to other instances that are presumably plentiful, in which knowledge brings bliss?

Allow me to go of topic Shietel, and let me ask you this, if you were to get one thing you can change in our community’s lifestyle, what would it be?

At December 19, 2005 9:46 PM, Blogger Totally Content said...

Sem - you and some of the others seem to have missed the point. I was not condoning burying one's head in the sand. I simply pointed out that there are those that are truly content with the status quo. At least as far as their beliefs go.

We each function in life in a different capacity - depending on our personality and interests. From the wonderful people who are actively involved in chesed, to those that are by nature wonderful coordinators who plan and orchestrate events. Not everyone is concerned with their purpose on earth. There are quite a few who are content living the lives proscribed for them - be it by their parents, the community leaders, or G-d. These people aren't ignoramuses, just rather well aware and educated in the subjects needed to excel at whatever they do in their own lives. To open a can of worms in front of them - just to see them squirm, is improper and unnecessary.

Sometimes answers bring more questions.
Sometime the light is more frightening than the dark.
And sometimes holding on to a false sense of security is more reassuring than living with definite uncertainty.
Because sometimes believing in something that may be wrong - is preferred to doubting what may be right.

At December 19, 2005 10:01 PM, Blogger Totally Content said...

Conartist - believe it or not, my first choice would be: Leaders who are worthy of the position, and a public that has the brains to respect and follow. I guess I was asking for two things right there... I'm greedy that way.

My next choice would be a more fun filled and upbeat lifestyle, especially for the boys. I know that many parents have the brains to give their children lots of fun kosher entertainment and a life they can always love - I just pray for the time that the community as a whole will embrace the concept, and once again go back to original Chasidism - with all of us feeling the spirituality, happiness and love in our day to day lives.

At December 20, 2005 12:20 AM, Blogger Con Artistic said...


See, somehow, I was under the impression that you are Totally Content. ;)

At December 20, 2005 12:33 AM, Blogger Totally Content said...

Conartist - Ever watched That 70s Show?

That was a typical Kelso move - yelling 'Burn!' (and if you didn't watch that show - let me assure you - that was no compliment!)

I'm content with my lifestyle -- totally content. That is not to say that things can't get better...

At December 20, 2005 12:44 AM, Blogger Con Artistic said...

So you want to change some things yet you’re “totally” content. Totally, yet not entirely, wholly, completely.

Forgive me but if this makes any sense then I must have had a bad day, or am I just screwed altogether?

At December 20, 2005 12:47 AM, Blogger Totally Content said...

It took you a while, but you finally guessed it - it's the latter. :)

Never fear, you might still outgrow it.

At December 20, 2005 12:54 AM, Blogger Con Artistic said...

So this is it, when given the choice between the obvious and the copout you choose the latter?

I pointed out, jestingly I shall add, (and please, I am all jest here, but accurate still) that your name isn’t quite a reality but rather a wish, but you chose the evasion I offered you in putting the messenger in the crazy home.

Could this be a common thread in all your posts?

At December 20, 2005 12:58 AM, Blogger Con Artistic said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

At December 20, 2005 1:01 AM, Blogger Con Artistic said...

Gee, that was harsh. Forgive me.

I do enjoy your posts immensely, it’s well written and nicely put—although, I disagree most of the time. But sadly, I enjoy this little bickering even more. I was just trying to point out something I have long wanted to on HR’s but never got the chance. Sorry.

At December 20, 2005 1:04 AM, Blogger Totally Content said...

Your attack on an old pseudonym is the only cop-out I noticed in this entire exchange.

At the time that I chose that name, I bothered with the explanation. If you cared to notice, I have not officially gone by that name here.

But if you wish to have the explanation, here goes: In this online community where so discontent Chasidim have congregated, I have stepped up to say that there are those that are totally content with the lifestyle.

Totally Content - does not mean ecstatic with the way things are.
Totally content does not even mean that things can't get better. Totally content means that this life is not that difficult that one can't choose to be content within it. Totally, completely content!

At December 20, 2005 1:06 AM, Blogger Totally Content said...

Be my guest - bicker away...

You won't mind though if I choose to retire for the night - do you?

I gave you a new comment to nit-pick and chew apart. Hearty appetite!

At December 20, 2005 1:13 AM, Blogger Con Artistic said...

Nah, I did enough damage.

I hope you took it the way it was intended to be and not as a silly “nitpick”.

At December 20, 2005 2:19 AM, Blogger turquoiseblue said...

I do agree with Sheitel, that for some, (and maybe for everyone - sometimes)ignorance is bliss. (And this is coming from someone who is the ultimate champion for not being "just a blind follower"... and taking the time to make educated decisions about major and minor things in life... yadda yadda yadda...)

I think there is a time and place for an intelligent person to choose "not to know" something(s) and living a better, even fuller, more content life - because of it.

I just posted something on my blog that provides one such example... and I can think of so many more...


At December 20, 2005 8:55 AM, Blogger InterestedJew said...

I hate to say it, Sheitel, but to say that you are Totally Content with "the lifestyle" is more than disingenuous. You see, from everything you have written here, and the mere fact that you are blogging online, it is clear that you DON'T LIVE THE LIFESTYLE. I am sure that it is true that there are many like you who do whatever they want behind closed doors and that you and they are indeed totally content. But this is something very different from saying people are content with the lifestyle (unless, to you, a part of that lifestyle is disregard for the rabbonim and blatant hypocrisy). In fact, it seems to me that feeling limited by the lifestyle might be what led you and others like you to expand your horizons by reading, seeing movies, going on the Internet, befriending members of the opposite sex, etc., all of which ARE OFFICIALLY CONDEMNED by the leadership of the chassidic world. Please stop insulting our intelligence. We get the point that there are some beautiful things about life in Willi, although, interestingly, you have yet to really identify what those things are for you (besides being able to get away with behavior most chassidim frown upon). I don't mean to sound harsh, but hypocrisy and ignorance (both of which you seem to defend) are hardly the best selling points for life in Willi.

At December 20, 2005 9:52 AM, Blogger ChasidishMom said...

Am I dumb or what, i wish i understood one word of your ups story, but sorry i didnt, maybe i should go and read it all over again.... just wanted mainly to comment on the Birth Control issue that you are suggesting your friend to go on it, I think its WRONG not wrong birth control, i'm on it myself, but i find it wrong to tell ppl to go on it, its offensive even if its a close friend or even relative, especially when you yourself mentioned that she herself knows about it, so if you know she knows all about it, what more do you need to tell her, thats her choice, and her husbands totally, sorry for being so critical to you, but ive heard it alot, ppl telling other ppl to go on BC, I just dont get it, anyone care to explain?!?!?!?

At December 20, 2005 10:29 AM, Blogger shlomohamelech said...

HR, and Con, I believe taht "Ignorance is bliss". I am saying this after recieving one degree and still wroking on another. My education and knowledge does not make me happier on a daily basis. Quiet the contrary. So many times a deal passes me by and I, as an educated man, look at all the analyst's reports and forcasts and decide not get the deal. My ignorant freind, who can't put 2+2 together, literally, buys it and makes a fortune.

Sure, when it comes to talking about the business, I can talk 24 hours non-stop, because I know sooo much. My ignorant freind will have to sit quite. This is when my education and knowledge pays off.

Knowledge is a taavah like any other. Some people like it, others don't. I always thought that when I will study this I will be happy. I finished the course and decided that I have to study more and then take another class. It's endless.

HR, your presumption that "most people would take knowledge over ignorance" does not hold up to reality. To aquire knowledge is so easy; just pick up a book and start reading. However, most people don't want to do it. They would rather be busy with shtisim or in the best case who won, the Yankees or the Mets. (sorry if I dont' put the proper teams on the same line, sports is the last thing I would want to study)

I believe that the only time an educated man is better off than the ignorant is when they both grow old. Usually, the ignorant person has nothing to do to pass the time with, besides fishing. These people are the ones who get milked out of their money and are usually the angry ones and the ones that a young perosn would hate to spend time with. It's quite the contrary with an educated person.

Con, just to interject in your argument with Sheitel. Total is usually used when you add and/or subtract constants or variables and you come up with a bottom line. It's either positive, negative ro neutral. I believe that Sheitel is totally content, but not complete. Complete is a different term.

At December 20, 2005 11:34 AM, Blogger InterestedJew said...

Ignorance is indeed bliss-that is the point of the saying. The more we open ourselves up to knowledge and experience, the more chance we have to become uncertain, confused, overwhelmed by the suffering of others, and the unfairness of life. To be educated (rather than ignorant) is not necessarily to be happy or Totally Content. All I would say to this, however, is that the bliss of ignorance is often selfish and myopic and if we care about others and the world we should strive to become educated without losing touch with what is blissful about life.

At December 20, 2005 12:18 PM, Blogger Con Artistic said...


As always when a word is in question, I refer to my dictionary. It defines “totally” as the very thing you want to shy away from “completely”. In contrast, the word “total” indeed means what you are saying, not to be confused with “totally”. In any case neither you nor me and not even Sheitel can claim to be “totally content” there’s always this little something, but we were just having a little fun last night—not to be taken seriously.

To your point. You successfully showed us an example where in fact ignorance is bliss, but that can be countered many times over, which is exactly my stand. While ignorance is sometimes bliss it is many times the source of unhappiness. Ever said “if only I knew?” imagine knowing just a little more when contemplating a deal, if you would only know what you know now, you would run on all four! So you were missing information, not that you had too much.

One might conclude that getting a degree is not enough you need the “full” information, or a PhD :)

At December 20, 2005 1:00 PM, Blogger shlomohamelech said...

Con, I am really sorry that you thik a PhD or any "Dr.," for thamatter, makes you full of information. In reality, it only makes "capable" of understanding and analysing the information you have. It seems that you really don't know what getting a PhD is all about. A PhD in any subject only attests to the fact that this person went through the pains of reading, analyzing, theorizing and in some cases working with the information or objects they are researching and then come up with something new or explain something that has never been explained before. And, of course, publish your work for peer review. It does not mean that you have got "all" the information, it simplay implies that you know how to work with the information logically and intelligently.

Now back to the discussion of ignorance. Honestly, I haven't seen, in real life, people fail or suceed in life "solely" because of ignorance or knowledge. Again, as HR pointed out above Shlomo Hamelech [I have never said that or have I...] said, "Yosef daas, yosef mach'ov." Again, my premise is that it's a taavah like any other. Some people like it and other don't. Even those who like knowledge, some like one area of study, others like another area. Except for Shloma Hamelech (here we go again...) no body knows everything.

At December 20, 2005 1:28 PM, Blogger InterestedJew said...

I would just like to point out there is a difference between information and knowledge.

At December 20, 2005 2:19 PM, Blogger Con Artistic said...

King, I put a smiley there for a reason.

The quote from your namesake is the same idea but in a different language as the English proverb quoted by Sheitel. Again, you can make a distinction between knowing something and knowing everything, but certainly knowing everything precedes ignorance.

At December 20, 2005 2:30 PM, Blogger mistake said...

Corrupted head under that sheitel: I know I swore I’d never post on here again, but I couldn’t resist.
Are you ignorant, sheitel? Do you celebrate am haaratzes? Or have you seen the light already? And have become uneasily corrupted by it

At December 20, 2005 4:02 PM, Blogger shlomohamelech said...

Con, I had to write it and get it out of my system. I have seen so many people who when they see PhD they really buy everything s/he says. There are other who if they see something printed, especially if it's in a book form, they say kudoish kudoish; the same way the fall for someone who chooses the prefix Ava"d.

When I pick up a book I am so skeptical, if it's outside the relm of science, and I know how to pick it apart the facts from opinion, fiction or ilusions. The only thing I don't question is "Der Blat" or "Der Yid" ;).

At December 20, 2005 4:05 PM, Blogger Con Artistic said...

and "Der Torah" ;)

At December 20, 2005 5:14 PM, Blogger chuck said...

I cant believe it
i really thought that sheital was the regular frum willi style woman
OK she can spell, she can formulate an intelligent idea into exceptional vernacular (write decently) but this blows me away
sheitel you watch TV? movies -DVDs?
then how can you say that you're a willi?
willi's dont watch - chasidim, real ones anyway, dont watch, even growise brother cd's are off limits in most chasidishe homes.
now, i'm not criticising you
i'm just expressing the thought that you are a flatbush/kensington women in willi clothing
even most homes in BP dont let TV
how would you be knowledgable regarding "That 70s Show"
maybe you should move to lawrence
they got lots of mixed up chasidim living there

At December 20, 2005 5:40 PM, Blogger Old Williamsburg said...

She's just trying to feel content through the implemantation of typical Williamsburgian ignorance.

At December 20, 2005 5:42 PM, Blogger Totally Content said...

Chuck - in response to your question - NO. I don't own a TV, nor do I 'watch TV'.

That is not to say that I haven't seen an occasional show. (Be it by download or an 'actual' viewing)Unfortunately I am familiar with most shows - past or present. Either because I read -about- it, read the transcripts themselves, or watched... Damn my good memory.

As for the occasional movie - I don't condone it. Nor am I justifying the practice. I’m simply being honest and saying that it is done my some in the community - and no, I don't put towels by the windows or listen through headphones. Never dawned on me that I might be judged. Amazingly I never was.

At December 20, 2005 6:16 PM, Blogger lazyboy said...

sheitel-don't you just love pizza?

At December 20, 2005 6:56 PM, Blogger InterestedJew said...

Oh. come one, Sheitel. Just tell us your name. Or post a photo at least? Then we'll all find out whether you might be judged.(believe me, this is not what I want for you, but it just seems very unusual indeed for you to claim you never feared being judged)

At December 21, 2005 11:50 AM, Blogger KiddushClubGuy said...

your friend Esti is Better Letter and she has email so she has some type of internet service, maybe koshernet

At December 21, 2005 12:32 PM, Blogger cafe_28 said...

Of course sheitel will be judged if people find out about her seeing movies and television shows. Maybe not by her family and freinds who do the same, but definitely by the rest of the community. Who is she kidding??

At December 21, 2005 1:10 PM, Blogger KiddushClubGuy said... Satmar Wsmbg if a guy wears his hat off to the side he is labled. It reads like a Stephen King novel or The Crucibel

At December 21, 2005 5:21 PM, Blogger Old Williamsburg said...

Kiddushclubguy: Not only is a person as such labeled, but shunned, belittled, and even threatened.

Come to Williamsburg for one Shabbos and let Sheitel do the explaining thereafter.

Most of what Sheitel is trying to sell us here is as true as her having intricate knowledge of movies and television shows by reading transcripts. It is a shame that her talent is overshadowed by obvious fabrication and distortion.

What I wonder is, does she really think that people are buying any of this, or is her crusade against the "misery of astuteness" (opposite of "bliss of ignorance") polluting her judgment?

At December 21, 2005 5:41 PM, Blogger modern chassidish said...

Judging on the responses I think as I said previously Sheital is not convincing anyone that Willi is honky dory.
The fact is that even if she is as happy as she says she is, she ignores the fact that "the unchosen" would not exist if her rosy portrayal of Willi was reality for most residents. Often, she contradicts herself and chooses to avoid responding to tough questions that refute her position. There is one point that I do agree with her is that some people are content with the way things are and see no reason for change. However, my view is that such an attitude is against the torah that preaches "not tostand idly by your brother's blood". One can not be a bystander when others are hurting. Again thank you malkie for being mekayim this pasuk.

At December 22, 2005 1:28 AM, Blogger Begreatfull said...

Modern chassidish:
First of all I most say you are so right why does in fact "UNCHOSEN" exist's?
but lets all understand sheitel needs to be able to have a place like this blog to vent or share her knowledge and wisdom with the world, Who alse- or very little people in her community will even begin to understand her knowledge, and her 145 IQ, She has to have a blog for someone to recognize she is talanted and smart and in deed she is, that I agree, but I say- let it be, No need to try and convince her or others like her to belive diffrently than what they belive,
I personaliy don't feel the need to go around selling my belives to anyone, or to try to prove my self that I'm all that specail. or at least I dont feel the need to advertize my contentment.

At December 23, 2005 10:38 AM, Blogger modern chassidish said...

There was no attempt on my part to convince Sheital of anything. I just wanted to point out flaws in her logic and untruths regarding the facts on the ground. She is entitled to her opinion and I would not want to take away her happiness and pride. But her tactics are disturbing. My mission is to uncover the cover ups, lies and distortions that are promulgated withen the frum world in an attempt to control people and limit their resources. I have a strong moral issue for those who promote these types of problem. And when I was younger the community succeeded in silencing in me. Now that I am a grown up they have miserably. I will not be silenced. My voice will be heard like those voices of the unchosen that have been unheard for too long have now been heard. The corruption and the hurt must come to an end. Sheital's comments struck a strong discord in me and therefore I responded. And maybe it was futile as far as altering sheital's view on reality. But for other visitors of this blog I wanted them to see the other side of the coin that she was trying to cover.

At December 23, 2005 4:36 PM, Blogger Begreatfull said...

Everyone who tries to cover up the reality, will never succeed, no matter what people say about how we hasdic rebels portray the hasidic communities, the truth is out.

We lived in the hasidic communities we suffered we hurt- even if Hella wouldn't have written our stories, "The truth still prevail's"

Modern chassidish:
I admire you for not sitting still, and letting your voice be heard. Don't ever think that I ment to say NOT to speak up.

At December 27, 2005 12:42 PM, Blogger chuck said...

sheitel said:
it is done my some in the community.
but never condoned
well never is too absolute i know that bedridden individuals are even encouraged to an extent
but encouraged with great pity that they have to resort to 'goyish' media to keep sane

"Never dawned on me that I might be judged"
oh really, we live in human world everyone is judged
every damn minute one is judged
oh look at the jerk
she nuts! look at her
check that out! what a whacko

Shietel,let me ask you, on a typical day that you are out on the street, how often do you here the expression 'yiosh' or 'iech glieb es nisht'
and they aint talkin about shoes

there used to be a saying 'america is not the perfect government, but is way ahead of anyone else'
I still think the chassidim while not the perfect way of life is the best of the lot
even if most are ignorant in mundane matters, life is simpler,
i mean in the long run is it really important to know about the yankees or tom cruise or what hydroelectric means?

At December 27, 2005 1:25 PM, Blogger modern chassidish said...

Chuck: thanks for commenting.

This blog is about the book "the unchosen" and if the book is true to the experience of a segment of Willi that Hella refers to as "rebels". There have been dialouges on this site from those who agree and disagree with the book's premise.
In any event the issue of a simple life or a complex media driven life is the ideal is a seperate issue and a matter of an opinion. However, the issues of negative experiences of community pressures, shiduch, lack of english, careear training to name a few is not a matter of an opinion but it is a matter of facts. Although I have not read data about these matters, one can collect data of reading scores, income level, divorce, domestic violence, amount of dates prior to weddings ETC. These are all in the realm of facts. Since the research still needs to be done we have different opinions about the facts. It is my belief as is others that these social issues are frequent enough to be considered alarming. Also, I think Hella's work is fair and balanced.

At December 28, 2005 1:10 AM, Blogger upstategal said...

There will always be those that rebel against rules imposed by their community and elders. this is a widespread problem in all walks of jewish life. not only in willi.
I sometimes think of myself as more educated and worldly but in the end I want my children to be ignorant to a point. If I allow them to be educated and wordly I may open a can of worms. Who knows where that will take them. This is what keeps me within the strict perimeters of my ultra extreme community. Have you never had an issue with your kids that they wanted something you thought was over the limit?

At December 28, 2005 1:15 AM, Blogger upstategal said...

The point is that you come across as wanting to be more lenient and less restrictive. As I have seen in the past, you must impose strict guidelines and hope your kids stay somewhere in the middle. sheitel, your kids may not be happy just watching a dvd at home. they will go to the theater and take a girlfriend with them.
the ones that fall away have other things missing in their lives, like the love and involvement of parents and last, it may be the community that deals the final blow that makes them leave the fold.

At December 28, 2005 10:59 AM, Blogger Begreatfull said...


Why is it that my all family who went through the same abuse I did, never strayed away? and seem to be very content with there religoun and how they live there life?

It's not just the love that is missing that makes someone stray away from there upbring or community, for each person it's different, some even come from very loving homes and leave the folds.

I agree that missing love does play a role in a lot of cases, but not to everyone, and if you think that raising kids restricted they will come out to be in the middle, naybe its true, But- your never guarenteed how your children will decide to live once they grow up-
each child is an individual with there own minds to think and decide how they feel is fit and right for them when they grow up.

weahter or not they are brought up in a very strict inviorment or less restricted.

I rather let my kids see the world, and allow them to make there own choices once they grow up, at least they don't feel the need to go behind my back.

like I said its never a guarentee what they will turn out to be, as a parent you do the best you can to raise them with right morals, and disipline them when needed, and the rest you hope and pray and live up to god that they will make the right choices.

At December 28, 2005 11:32 AM, Blogger JewishBiFem said...

I look at my frum friends and see always a smile never feel pressured or caged if you know what I mean. I wonder if they are close minded or truly feel content and happy in the place they have been raised.

Yet I see some who feel pressured in every step they take in yiddishkeit! I don't understand those who feel the need to go to bars and get drunk on friday night (ive heard stories I sure hope to god it aint true) can't you just do your think on sunday? all week? see I hate to judge but I am a bit confused if your frum and you want to FIT IN! and do your thing why give it all up? I say its a great feeling to have boudaries keep shabbos/holidays and follow basic rules yet don't feel pressured. I don't think with all the bs I do or want to do I don't ever regret being born chasidish......

That said I dont blame the ones that leave for the sake of sanity since we are criticized, manipulated,controlled,judged,fake assumtions,harassed....

It all depends on how you look on life or if you frankly give a damn! as far as I am concerned in this place we do need to give a damn for the sake of our future.

Happy chanukah!

At December 28, 2005 12:44 PM, Blogger upstategal said...

children who are exposed to the outside world are definitely molded and influenced by what they see and hear. this is not giving them a choice. they need guidelines. with lots of love and communication. no cynicism or rhetoric. let alone hypocricy. you need to be a role model and work on your own midos. they aborb EVERYTHING. That's why its so dangerous to expose them. They end up also absorbing the things YOU dont see and wouldnt want them to. I have teenagers. I see this every step of the way.
I'm not talking extremes. Heard of the "mitelveg"? It aint easy. Very tricky.
then it is a separate chapter to also bring out each childs potential and talent.
I just love those that do whatever they want when the kids are young and when the kids start developing a personality or attitude they come to a screeching halt and U-turn, oh so fast....!

At December 28, 2005 12:48 PM, Blogger Begreatfull said...


Like I said before there is no gaurentee- Do whats best for you and hope for the best.

At December 28, 2005 1:39 PM, Blogger modern chassidish said...

"That's why its so dangerous to expose them"

The fact is that in today's world they will be exposed one way or another. It is better if one is educated about what is out there rather than hiding it. Let me give you an example. Some people have no sex education. The thinking is what do they need to get exposed to this when they get married then they will learn what they need to know. This is a naive approach. I would rather kids learn about sex from their parents then from pornography. Unfortunatly, if kids do not get the info from their parents they may go to other sources. Seperate schooling is fine but ask yourself do you think one's first sexual experience should be with a prostitute or at a massage parlor? For many, that was their outlet. Exposure does not mean indulgence rather I advocate for education and not hiding facts. When one hides things it only adds to curiosity and not the other way around. One must also be honest about things lest there is a betrayel. Exposure is not getting a career. If one feels threated by someone going to college they can go to yu or touro. Also, one can ask what will happen if we don't provide a career for our children? Do we want them to become beggers?

At December 28, 2005 2:13 PM, Blogger Begreatfull said...


You said exactly what I feel and beleive in very much so.

Thank you!!

At December 28, 2005 3:26 PM, Blogger Old Williamsburg said...

If anyone of you has an account at the Brooklyn Public Library, try to get the book "The Unchosen." I've tried; here's the message.

88 holds on first copy returned of 48 copies (!)

Many of the holds are in the BP and Willi branches. So I wonder, why the craze over a book Sheitel claims is unworthy of its covers?

At December 28, 2005 4:18 PM, Blogger cafe_28 said...

Yeah, Old, I've seen that. I happen to have it on hold there too.

I just want to see what Sheitel is referring to, and what she thinks is so bad.

At December 29, 2005 3:08 AM, Blogger InterestedJew said...

If bas melech knew how to read carefully, he would have understood that this book is NOT a dissertation (I heard the author state this openly in an interview and the same has been printed in a variety of places). For the dissertation (and the book), she interviewed, I believe, over 70 people (I think this number appears in the book). Additionally, if he knew anything about research methodology he would understand the justifications for qualitative methdology. As for his claim that none of the characters in the book is a serious questioner, I would only say that a person can act from emotion, can exhibit signs of anxiety and depression, and even erratic behavior, and still be a SERIOUS questioner. These are not mutually exclusive ontological conditions. Characterizing someone as a serious questioner is not, after all, meant to be a description of his or her demeanor. The way I read it, everyone portrayed in the book had very serious questions and doubts indeed--both about the truth of the religion and about the Hasidic way of life. That the manner in which some of these people expressed and dealt with their questions and doubts does not fit bas melech's narrow definition of "seriousness" is reflective of his clearly very limited understanding of human motivation and behavior. It seems he has internalized the frum world's tendency to discredit anyone who cannot "control" his or her emotions as mentally impaired. My guess is that he considers himself a "serious" questioner and is terrified of being associated with those he would label as mentally ill.

At December 29, 2005 11:04 AM, Blogger Con Artistic said...

Old Willi,

The book is worth to buy. Forget the library.


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