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Judaism, Temple and Life Styles

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 

I don't know if this is an exclusively Jewish question but since I am Jewish that's relevant. We have been members of a Reform Temple for a while now (6 or so years), in the beginning I really loved going. The weekly services were wonderful and I felt connected, even though there was always a divide in lifestyle with most of the other members. We moved away for two years when my son was young and when we came back and tried to re-enter the world of the Temple with a child I have been feeling conflicted. I rarely get to services because my husband has to work Saturdays, and there is no child care options. When we do go to events it is obvious that our choices (unschooling, urban homesteading, simple living) are very different than everyone we interact with. I love Judaism but I don't feel connected to the community, it's sad because this is the Temple where I found my first real connection to the religious side of being Jewish. I've been looking around for other Temples in the area but I am constantly dissuaded by the focus on money, every single membership website I have looked at has started with what their fees are.


I spent many years going to a Quaker School and am about ready to join the local meetinghouse purely because they seem more in line with our lifestyle (I know a lot of Jews who are members of Quaker Meetings so it isn't completely odd). I'm not sure if I have a question or what I am looking for but this is the only place I feel like I might get any ideas that would be relevant.

post #2 of 6

Have you looked into your local Chabad? IME many are very welcoming without pressuring you to become more observant than is your comfort level. They also tend to go out of their way to make things kid-friendly and to help people just connect to Judaism. Not sure if you would meet unschooling, urban homesteading people there, but they *tend* to be fairly non-judgemental. 


There are a few resources online for Jewish AP and homeschooling. Maybe you'd find more focused help for your area at a specifically Jewish site? If you're interested, I'm happy to PM you a link.

post #3 of 6
Thread Starter 

I'd love to see that site. It isn't that I am looking for people who are the same as us (though that would be nice) it's more that I'd like not to feel uncomfortable and looked down on for not being yuppies.

post #4 of 6

I see you're in Colorado.  If you want to find more down-to-earth folks (and possibly homeschooling or whatever your particular crunch is) then your best bet might be to search for Jewish Renewal shuls/synagogues.  There seem to be a bunch of them in Boulder, but if you dig around I'm sure you'll find something in the Denver area.


Or Reconstructionist folks, who are kind of like Renewal only more organized and ... a touch drier.  LOL



post #5 of 6

One possibility is that there may be other folks who are not attending for the same reason you are feeling a bit lonely.  Maybe there is some way you could try and find and connect with those people in some other format.  If you had people you could talk with in a book group or mom's group or something, you might find you didn't need to find a different Temple.

post #6 of 6
Have you spoken to your rabbi about your concerns? He might be able to point you towards some families or organizations in the area that are more in tune with your beliefs and parenting style. I have found that in general, rabbis are very open to meeting and trying to help out the members of their congregations.
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