Inside Israel 5:14 AM 6/19/2013
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Batya Medad made aliya from New York to Israel in 1970 and has been living in Shiloh since 1981. Recently she began organizing women's visits to Tel Shiloh for Psalms and prayers. (For more information, please email her.) Batya is a newspaper and magazine columnist, a veteran jblogger and recently stopped EFL teaching. She's also a wife, mother, grandmother, photographer and HolyLand hitchhiker, always seeing things from her own very unique perspective. For more of Batya's writings and photos, check out:
Nisan 23, 5770, 4/7/2010
Now we're back from the Passover Holiday. I've been blogging all through on Shiloh Musings and me-ander. You're invited to take a look.
Living in Shiloh for almost thirty years, we've become part of a very Jewish community. Diaspora-based ethnic distinctions are getting more and more blurred. Every year after switching the kitchen back to its normal chametz mode we reward ourselves by celebrating the Moroccan Maimona, a Jewish holiday we knew nothing about growing up in Ashkenaz (Eastern European) New York Jewish families.
Like most of our neighbors with married children, we have grandchildren of "mixed ethnic" Jewish identities. Everyone is 100% Jewish, but it's common for Yemenite grandmothers to have Ashkenaz grandchildren. Or, like us, our Tunisian progeny eat their rice, forbidden by our ethnic custom, at our Passover table. Menus, like families, are very mixed.
After thousands of years of exile, we Jews have become comfortable, too comfortable in many of our temporary homes and cultures. We've adopted and adapted foods, menus and cooking styles, clothing, art and music from our hosts frequently forgetting that those locations were supposed to be be temporary punishments.
Recent polls have shown a new a wonderful tolerance and acceptance of this phenomena. This is very different from the early days of the State of Israel when the European Zionists unabashedly discriminated against North African and Indian Jews.
We're in the midst of a process, preparing ourselves as a People to accept Moshiach Ben David, when he shows himself, speedily in our days, G-d willing.