There seems to be a silent battle going on. Even a war. There are those who claim they are more pure, more holy,and just plain better then all and there are those who argue against it. What to do?
In light of the fact that its the three weeks, a time to mourn, to remember the Beit haMikdash, to perhaps...try to stop baseless hatred; In light of all this I pray that I can make a difference somewhere.
The reality is right now that the formerly mentioned group, let's call them the "frummer than thou" has the upperhand. They got the other group, let's call them the "Oh no you ain't!" , running scared.
It first started with scare tactics, intimidation. Soon it seemed everyone was hiding and pretending to be more frum than they really are. Well, I can't say "everybody" but a good amount of people that I know anyway. And those who were able to break themselves and give up alot of things -whether it was halachically necesaary or not- to (hope to) fit the mold would be so broken, that it hurt or would live in fear that they may fall or would regretably fall into step of the "frummer than thou" legion.
The "Oh no you ain't" found retaliation by snickering, blogging it out, continuing to hide and have nothing to 'do with it' etc.
Now, i'm hearing and reading more outrageous things such as the 'ya gotta like cholent or else your not Jewish' concept -which I hope is simply a story not reported well; and then there's the whole goings on in Ramat Beit shemesh, not to mention others.
Quite honestly, the 'frummer than thou' has got the upperhand.
BALANCING THE SCALE
If I could boldly give any kind of advice to the "Oh no you ain't" side, i'd say stop the snickering, stop the blogging, no more hiding. Remember the true Jewish weapon! Remember ahavat Hashem, yirat shamayim, Torah, prayer, middot, derekh eretz. don't look left or right, keep trying and living your best.
You see, the whole reason I call the other team the "No it ain't!" because its all mostly retaliatory and not its own stance. Its like a team with a defense but no offense.
WINNING THE WAR
One thing that I suspect could help to win the war is a focus. Refocusing the attention towards yirat shamayim and away from the fear of man that the intimidation tactics brought on.
I suppose that's one advantage of being black. No matter where I go, I know someone is going to think, "what does she know?!" So, it makes that I feel like i'm starting from a negative. But then when I can -with G-d's help- show that I do know a thing or two its great! But when I err, I say, "hey, i'm a simple Jew!"
This "i'm a simple Jew!" attitude is a great weapon because it fights against the ego.
THE REAL BATTLE
I think the real battle going on is not really against people or a group of people, but against the ego. Arrogance, chutzpah, Ego, and the leader being Anger are all armed to the teeth! Its up to the little guys, the little Dovid haMelechim, the sweet wonderful Jewish fellas and gals who by their roused love of Hashem came to do His givin mitzvot and eventually came to yirat Shamayim; its up to all of us to summon our legions: humility, love, modesty, our caring for others, with the leading middot being our Awe to fight and win!
HOPE FOR THE FUTURE
Please G-d, I pray that humility wins over arrogance. That people learn that we really need each other. Sometimes I wonder, if people could all become goyim for a day (chas v'shalom) just to see how the world views the Jewish people, maybe then we'd all see how much what we have is beautiful and how much we need each other.