Religion in its most basic form is a way for humans to connect to their Creator. It offers us a way of being part of a community of like-minded people, and a way to pay respect to what we believe created the universe and all life within it.
Sometimes our hearts lead us to a person who doesn't have the same religious or spiritual beliefs as we do, and for many people, the relationship ends there because of it. They believe that if two people can't have the same religious beliefs, then they cannot be together. And sometimes that choice is the wise one to make.
Then there are situations where it can - and does work; where the choice to remain with that person is the right one.
Whether the relationship succeeds depends on many factors, but most importantly, the individuals and the individuals as a couple.
Mutual consideration, understanding, acceptance, tolerance, and unconditional love are all things that must be in every interfaith marriage and family in order for it to be healthy and successful.
Does this apply only to interfaith families and marriages? Absolutely not.
So, if interfaith and same-faith families require the same things, then what's the big deal about interfaith marriages and families?
Well, in modern time most clergy believe that any and all marriages have a myriad of difficulties to overcome without having to add the "G'd Card" into the mix, such as "My beliefs are right and yours are wrong"..."I want to be with you forever, but if you aren't saved, then I can't be with you in the afterlife"...: "I grew up with a christmas tree and you didn't, and I want one and you don't". There are many more examples, but I'm sure you're familiar.
Most clergy believe it's near impossible for a family to be united and strong if they can't even agree on their religious beliefs, but there are ways to do it if both people are willing and committed.
In general, Judaism recognizes that a couple other large religions worship the same G'd we do, but many of their teachings, interpretations, and actions don't fully align with those of Judaism, so until very modern times each religious group stayed physically and spiritually separate from the other, socializing with, working with, and marrying only those from within their respective religious communities. But because their religions originate from that of the Jewish G'd, they can be considered righteous in the eyes of G'd.
The rise of technology and the ever-growing population on earth has brought all of us much closer, exposing each of us to all of the world's cultures, belief systems, and lifestyles. And because of this, the odds of meeting and falling in love with a person from outside of our belief system has grown exponentially. So where does that leave many Jews? Wondering how they can still be with the one they love and not lose their Jewish identity, or their children's Jewish identity and connection to Judaism.
Drop me a line some time and let's chat.
You want to get married
You want to figure out how to keep your interfaith marriage strong
You want to figure out how to raise your children in an interfaith family
You love your partner but are afraid of losing your religious identity
Please understand that I am not a licensed health care provider of any type, including counselor, psychologist, or psychiatrist; nor do I hold myself out as one to the public. I am simply a rabbi - a teacher of Judaism, a Jewish spiritual leader.
Judaism is rich with traditions that reach into our souls from thousands of years ago. The words of the Torah have been - and will continue to be - interpreted by each generation within the religious and socio-political framework of their society. We live in a time that little resembles that of our ancient ancestors - a time when the Torah was given to the world and interpreted for the first time. So come explore Judaism as it relates to us, past-present-and-future. Let me help you create a Judaism that speaks to YOU, brightens YOUR heart, and burns in YOUR soul.
USA: Though I reside in WA, I do travel to various points across America to officiate at life-cycle events and other activities for those requesting my services. I am also available on short notice for your time-sensitive needs.