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Katz in the Hat

I watned to follow up from my original Kippah post. I’ve received some great feedback through private channels (email, face to face) and there’s been some wonderful comments over at the URJ re-post of this essay.

In addition, it turns out that blogger Jesse Paikin has been wrestling with similar ideas at the same time as I have. You can read his thoughts here:
http://jepaikin.wordpress.com/2009/09/15/billboard-judaism/
and here:

http://jepaikin.wordpress.com/2009/09/27/billboard-judaism-week-1-a-too-brief-review/

I’m beginning to think that wearing a kipah is much like prayer. The point of prayer is not that we pray because God somehow “needs” our prayers. The point tefillah is that WE need to pray. And in many cases we pray so that we eventually come to understand the way in which prayer satisfies a need which we have (What that need is, exactly, likely varies from person to person. Like many observances.).

Likewise I’m beginning to think that the kipah has little to do with what God or tradition or Judaism requires, and much more about what it teaches me. I’m far more aware of my actions when I wear a kipah. Am I shopping on Shabbat? Am I standing in a McDonalds ordering a sausage biscuit? Am I OK with the “me” I’m presenting.

I don’t think those are bad questions to be asking. If I’m OK with me and my kipah in the HoneyBaked Ham store, well then I’m OK with it. If I’m NOT ok with that, then I get to wrestle with yet another part of my life and come to terms with it.

Thanks for everyone’s support, comments and feedback!

L’Shalom,
– Leon

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