Saturday, August 06, 2005
Anakin, how much are you like me? I don't like our thoughts being so similar.
I was going to start originally writing about how sad I was this Shabbos that I was still single. I complained to my Rabbi during Havdalah that I don't think I'll ever find a shidduch. He told me my statement was irrational; however he did admit that he was thinking of me a few times today and he felt bad that I was still single. I told him that I was avoiding going back to yeshiva (rabbinical school) for Tisha B'Av (as I've done every year since I left) because most of my yeshiva friends are already married and I feel like a failure going back there alone.
"Strike while the iron is hot," the rabbis at yeshiva used to say. They would get us all excited about how great our lives would be and we would become so frum (religious), even frummer than the rabbis (hence the word frumpter), but then while we were getting close to leaving yeshiva, the rabbis would find shidduchim (wives) for the bachurim (students) and by the time they left, they were not only psyched about being religious, but they were married.
I left yeshiva on my own without a wife, and I ventured into law school land where everything is secular and everybody is having sex with everybody. It's been so difficult staying frum (religious), especially with the temptations around me all the time.
I was complaining to the rabbi that my iron is no longer hot, and that I've cooled in my religiosity, and that I am not the kind of religious person that I feel I should be. [Remember Anakin's comment "I'm not the kind of Jedi I should be"? I related to that.]
The rabbi agreed with me and told me that he sees it too that I am not as religious as I used to be and that my "iron" has cooled. Yet he says that after four years of battling the secular forces around me that tempt me to leave yiddishkeit (Judaism) and the loneliness I feel on a daily basis from being alone and single, he feels bad for me that I have to go through this, but other than his wife working as hard as she does to find a shidduch for me, he doesn't know what else to do. It's a rough situation, but he hopes it will be over soon.
I think of my Rabbi like a master and I am his apprentice, kind of like the system in the Star Wars movies. In Chassidic Judaism, the system is similar -- there is a mashpia (like the master), and the disciple. In my heart, I hope I am still on my rabbi's side by the time I get married. I fight my war against loneliness and against becoming secular and breaking Torah and halacha (Jewish law) every day. I am not in a yeshiva world, and I am not in the secular world. I am stuck somewhere in between with little support from either side. As I said before -- I just hope I stay frum and something inside me doesn't change.