The Jewish populace seems too busy confronting themselves to realize that there is a shidduch tragedy before them. All are engaged in the “I am Frummer (more religious) Than Thou Game.”
Yes, the chess game of the Jewish people does exist and it consists of numerous players including Kings, Queens, Pawns and Knights.
Let us analyze these players. The Kings and Queens are found everywhere. They are better known as the “Better Than Thou” contingency representing, with nose held high, the so-called “super machmir (stringent)”, whose main function in life is to supervise and interpret the motives of others.
And J.A.P., a term which applies equally to both sexes, reigns supreme. A true J.A.P. is one whose real emotions and feelings of dedication and idealism are hidden under the heavy burden of appeasing self-righteous motives. Is it any wonder that some young Jewish singles seek elsewhere?
And let us not forget the elite, the “Yechis (heredity status) Seekers”. “Remember my son, you belong to a righteous family; avoid the Baal Tshuvah (a non-observant Jew who became religious), after all they may change their ways and go back to what they once were. Remember who you are and where you came from.”
And if these were not sufficient, the Kings and Queens engage themselves in the “I am Glatter than thou pageant.’ This requires the ability to openly criticize others regarding their mode of dress, their eating patterns, the collor of their Shabbat tablecloths, and the opinion that recognized certified Kosher products are not acceptable. The fictitious Glatt pickle is preferred, and, of course, an open attack against religious leaders' decisions, their ammunition being some new chumrah (strict legal view) entitles one to acquire membership in this select group. The only problem is that no one wants to be a follower and thus the leaders continue quoting profound statements found in the tractate “Buba Meisah (fairy tales).”
Now, the heroic Knight enters the arena. This individual, male or female, traditionally minded and filled with the love of Torah, wages an heroic campaign. The Knights are represented by clergy and lay leadership who open their hearts to Jewish young people communicating the love and harmony of the Torah. Numerous Rabbis are fighting on the front lines to create a vibrant Jewish community. Young people are engaged in Shabbatonim, retreats and seminars in an active attempt to spread Yiddishkeit and meet one another; yet, too often, Jewish organizations seem more interested in the establishment of plush swimming pools than in financing such activities (or even religious projects such as a community mikvah,ritual bath).
These Knights, however are confronted by numerous foes. Rabbis are challenged by the Glatt contingent whose main battle cry seems to be “The Mechitzah (separation between men and women in the synagogue sanctuary) is not high enough.”
Why is there a Shidduch crises? Perhaps it is because in the chess game of life, it is the PAWN who suffers the most.
The Torah holds the answers to all our questions; however, human beings, with G-d’s help, are needed to overcome so called obstacles.
If only we, the pursuers of Torah knowledge, would realize that the battle is immense and the time is short. Instead of playing the Glatt Game called “Frummer than Thou,” let us communicate love and knowledge , let us act in the image of G-d; only then will we be worthy to be called Frum Yidden who walk in the “Glatt path”. In the words of Rav Kook, “Just at the Second Temple was destroyed by acts of brotherly hatred, the third Temple will be built by acts of brotherly Love.”
Let's give our young adults a chance!