web analytics
August 31, 2014 / 5 Elul, 5774
At a Glance
Sections
Sponsored Post
Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat (L) visits the JewishPress.com booth at The Event. And the Winners of the JewishPress.com Raffle Are…

Congratulations to all the winners of the JewishPress.com raffle at The Event



REFOCUSING THE PRAYER EXPERIENCE

God, Are You Threatening Me?

God Threatening Me

Photo Credit: Yori Yanover

I am not suggesting selective prayer, nor am I endorsing an escape from the uncomfortable, just because it’s uncomfortable. Rather, this is a nod to the reality of our emotions. Today, fear tends to alienate, rather than precipitate change. A message of love, forgiveness, and compassion inspires. Both themes can be found within the liturgy –we select our focus. The decision of where to invest concentration, limited, even for the best of us, will determine if some of us leave our seats disheartened, or with the auspicious taste of a sweet New Year.

Hannah Dreyfus is a junior at Stern College for Women, double majoring in journalism and Judaic studies. She is managing editor of The Observer, official newspaper of Stern College, and hopes to pursue a career in journalism.

About the Author: Hannah Dreyfus is a junior at Stern College for Women majoring in journalism. She currently works as managing editor of the YU Observer and an editorial intern for The Jewish Week. Her work has appeared on Aish.com, The Times of Israel website, and in The Jewish Press. She hopes to pursue a joint degree in journalism and law.


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

2 Responses to “God, Are You Threatening Me?”

  1. Shira Leff says:

    I never viewed Nesaneh Tokef as a threat. I think of it more as a catalyst for stripping through our facade of self-sufficiency to allow us to realize that really G-d is in control. With that framework, we can more easily feel the awe and the significance of the Yamim Noraim in general, and of the impending judgement in particular. Through our realization of our dependence upon G-d (He does, after all, ultimately decree 'who will live and who will die'), we come to a state of deep love for Him.

  2. Anonymous says:

    So I disagree. Its not that we don't respond to fear – you are just not scary enough. They don't believe that you will follow through. They know their parents will back them up and if you send them home a week early it is you who will not be there next summer. Ahava (love) is great – but bypassing Yirah (fear) leads to a distorted view of Ahava.

    In the movie "A bronx tale" the following dialogue takes place…the kid asks the gangster "Is it better to be loved or feared?" to which the gangster (played by the great Chazz Palminteri): "It's a good question. It's nice to be both, but it's difficult. If I had my choice, I would rather be feared. Fear lasts longer than love."

    While obviously love of Hashem is the ultimate goal – without the respect that comes from fear, however, – you are just deluding yourself.

Comments are closed.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Current Top Story
US Marines walk a city street in Fallujah, heavily damaged by the fighting. (2004)
Netanyahu Says Making Gaza ‘Israel’s Fallujah’ Was Too High a Price
Latest Sections Stories
LBJ-082914

What better proof do we need than the recent war with Hamas in Gaza, dubbed “Operation Protective Edge,” that transformed the pain and suffering of three families into a sense of unparalleled unity and outpouring of love of the entire nation of Israel?

Katzman-082914

So many families are mourning, and all along we mourned with them.

Astaire-082914

In addition to his great erudition, Rabi Akiva was known for his optimism.

Kupfer-082914-Chuppah

She told me that she was busy and that he could sit in his wet clothes for the rest of the day. It would teach him to be more careful.

What can we do to help him stop feeling so sad all the time?

Children with dyslexia or dysgraphia frequently have problems in social relationships.

Israel’s neighbors engaged in hostilities from the onset. The War of Independence was a hard-won battle. Aggression and enmity has followed for 66 years.

The contest will include student-created sculpture, computer graphic design, collage, videography, PowerPoint and painting.

David, an 8-year-old boy on the autism spectrum, recently attended a Friendship Circle event. As he entered he told his Dad, “I love coming to the FC programs ‘cause everyone loves each other.”

Goldsmith himself went on his own “voyage of discovery” to the places where his grandfather and uncle landed and were sent.

Frank proclaimed himself Zvi’s successor and the reincarnation of King David.

Almost immediately the audience began singing and clapping and continued almost without stop throughout the rest of the concert.

As of late, vintage has definitely been in vogue in the Orthodox community.

Stroll through formal gardens, ride mountain bikes, or go rock climbing.

More Articles from Hannah Dreyfus
Dreyfus-022213

I have two homes.

My first home is Connecticut, a place of rustling oaks and sprawling backyards. My second home is Israel.

My relationship with social media is and remains an ambivalent one. Unlike many of my peers, I did not initially embrace social media, from its beginning stages with AOL instant messenger and proceeding quickly on to MySpace and Facebook.

While fear used to motivate, even inspire, mine is a generation that views threats as challenges and raises a skeptical brow at austere ultimatums. Reverence often seems a throwback to old times, and absolute authority, whether in classroom or in the synagogue, is a concept increasingly more difficult to swallow. As a counselor at an Orthodox Jewish sleep-away camp this past summer, I witnessed this phenomenon first hand. I worked with forty teenage girls, ages 15 and 16, and quickly discovered the most dependable way to get nothing done: threats.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/indepth/god-are-you-threatening-me-refocusing-the-prayer-experience/2012/09/30/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: