Richard H. Schwartz, Ph.D.
To be a Jew is to see the world
through the eyes of God. It to be unreconciled
to the world as it is, to be discontented
with the status quo and unafraid to shake
To be a Jew Is to be a co-worker
with God In the task of perfecting the world,
--- It is to know that the world Is unredeemed
and that God needs us to help redeem It.
To be a Jew is to feel deeply
the harms done to others - to speak out In-the
face of wrong doing, and to prod the conscience
of those who passively accept the status quo.
To be a Jew is to stand apart
from the world, to be a non-conformist, to
shout no when others murmur yes to injustice.
To be a Jew Is to be Intoxicated
with a dream of social justice to have an
abiding concern for others, to have compassion
without condescension for the poor, the weak,
and the suffering.
To be a Jew means to know that
God's name can be sanctified by each of our
actions, It means trying to live a life compatible
with being created in God's Image by doing
justly, loving kindness, and in all ways Imitating
God’s positive attributes.
To be a Jew means to believe
in the unlimited potential of people in spite
of the great evil and ugliness around us.
It means being chosen to serve as an example,
to be "a light unto the nations."
To be a Jew means of course
many specific practices concerning Shabbat
and kashruth. It means study and worship,
and most of all action and observance. It
means all these things and much, much more.
It is not easy to be a Jew, but it is a very
significant and worthwhile endeavor.