Blog: August 2016

Most of these posts were originally posted somewhere else and link to the originals. While this blog is not set up for comments, the original locations generally are, and I welcome comments there. Sorry for the inconvenience.

Can you be "too orthodox"?

A question on Mi Yodeya was asked by somebody who recently moved from a large Jewish community to a small one. The asker dresses more modestly than those in the new community and has gotten critical comments about it. The person asked: is there such a thing as being too orthodox?

My answer:

There is not such a thing as "too orthodox", no. There can be such a thing as "too pushy" when people are too direct in trying to change others, but that's not the situation you've described. Never feel guilty about following halacha for yourself.

There can also be such a thing as "unfamiliar and thus different". The only synagogue in town is the only place for Jews there to go, and those Jews might come from a range of backgrounds and observance levels. People at both ends of that spectrum of observance are likely to be a little uncomfortable with people they don't know who are from the other end. There are probably people there whose dress and behavior make you a little uncomfortable, but you're probably keeping that to yourself (and kudos for that). Read moreā€¦