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September 18, 2014 / 23 Elul, 5774
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Of Davenning, and OTD (Off the Derech)

Being frum today is an upper-middle-class pursuit.

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So – that is my lament. I don’t see it getting better. It will get worse before it does. I just hope that my own children and grandchildren survive it. As for me – I feel more distant from Orthodoxy today than I have felt for fifty years. And I will continue to try to daven.

Visit Emes Ve-Emunah .

About the Author: Harry Maryles runs the blog "Emes Ve-Emunah" which focuses on current events and issues that effect the Jewish world in general and Orthodoxy in particular. It discuses Hashkafa and news events of the day - from a Centrist perspctive and a philosphy of Torah U'Mada. He can be reached at hmaryles@yahoo.com.


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17 Responses to “Of Davenning, and OTD (Off the Derech)”

  1. Ken Goldman says:

    my feelings as well

  2. Ken Goldman says:

    my feelings as well

  3. Ettie Cohen says:

    Very well put & to the point!

  4. Ettie Cohen says:

    Very well put & to the point!

  5. Anthony Kent says:

    Over the pond in the UK, you are correct regarding rigid black and white only services. However, I see more pockets of diversity – small orthodox minyanim without strict dress codes, modern tunes, competent lay members giving shiurim. All is not lost; Centrist orthodoxy here is much higher % wise of the overall community thanks to great inspiring leaders such as Emeritus chief Rabbi Sacks.

  6. Jonathan Weisman says:

    Nice article

  7. A little off subject but highly interesting. Even the ignorant in the foothills of Kentucky, once under the anointing of the Holy Spirit have been filmed davening. Also, the dance they did, now done in Pentecostal churches, is the same dance the ancient Israelis did and still do. Hmmmm……

  8. Mariantha Harris says:

    Well done and completely honest and truthful!!! Imagine all of that and additionally being a Jew of color!!!! Just yesterday I attended a Yom Kippur service where the music was wonderful and the service in general quite "nice"!! Albeit the environment was totally unfriendly!!!! Not one person spoke to me…… I think that I was invisible!!! I did wish one person "L'Shana Tova"!! They responded mildly shocked!!! And this was the DAY of atonement!!!! I am not amazed why people leave Orthodoxy in general and Judaism in general!!!! There are few, if any warm and inviting places that follows the Torah principle of making the" stranger" welcome. Being OTD will continue to escalate until all Jews truly return to Torah!!

  9. Anonymous says:

    Another story/column criticizing observant Judaism. We're our own worst enemy! Maybe the anonymous author should join a so-called Reform congregation (spitting). They have completely "modernized" the service, have no dress code (other than women should wear yarmulkes and tallesim), and do everything possible to dilute the tradition, in the name of being "inclusive" and having a feel-good. "personally-meaningful" experience. In fact, you or your kids don't even have to be Jewish to join!

  10. David Blatt says:

    Well done Harry Maryles

  11. David Blatt says:

    Well done Harry Maryles

  12. Not every one will accept you. Don't expect people to make u happy. U must rely on the happiness from within. There is discrimination every were. Even within the family circle just that it is easy to overlook. Remember, be the change you wish for. If you like the way they worship then establish yourself there and make the way for others of your color. Remember MARTIN LuTHER KING jr never ran away

  13. Mariantha, I understand how you must feel. Maybe the Jews would return to Torah if not for the leaders who commit such acts of discouragement.

  14. Mariantha, I understand how you must feel. Maybe the Jews would return to Torah if not for the leaders who commit such acts of discouragement.

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Binyamin and Chaya Maryles, uncle and aunt of Emes Ve-Emunah author Harry Maryles.
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