Gaining Religious Perspective
In 1968 I was born in Portland Oregon as a Jewish boy. From the day, I was born being Jewish was and is who I am.
I try to live my life by a Hebrew phrase “Tikkun Olam”, to heal or repair the world. In the modern era, tikkun olam is the idea that Jews bear responsibility not only for their own moral, spiritual, and material welfare, but also for the welfare of society at large (Wikipedia).
Links to more information about Tikki Olam:
My Jewish Learning.com
My religion is important to me, but it is mine, I recognize that millions of other people have different beliefs and religions than mine. I have never tried to change or influence others to convert to my religion, because I believe each person’s relationship with God is theirs and theirs alone. I always try to respect each person’s religion and believes and focus on the similarity’s that all religions have in common which is to make our community better. If I expect you to respect me as a Jewish man than I must respect you as a Muslim, Christian, Mormon and so on.
About a year ago, my step mother died. Nancy Sachs was a devoted Christian, who went to church faithfully, and read the bible. She believed in Christ as her savior as much as anyone, yet I never knew her real deep devotion until her memorial service.
Growing up she never tried to convert her Jewish son or ask me to take Christ as my savior. She honored and respected who I was even though I’m sure part of her felt compelled to save me. We celebrated both Christian and Jewish holidays in my youth, and I grew up in Albany Oregon, a predominately white, Christian community.
What I learned from my experience of being one of only a few Jews in a town of 28,000, was this; God is in my heart and my soul, God knows who I am and when I fall short, but more importantly is that we should celebrate everyone and their beliefs. That’s why I try to embrace, honor and respect everyone and their religious beliefs.
Perhaps when I die and go before God he/she will say it was never about which religion was or wasn’t the “one”, it was about believing in God, having faith, trusting God and always having love and acceptance in your heart for those that worship different than you.
This page will be focused on celebrating our unified love and belief in God and our efforts to “Heal the World” together.