Saturday, August 20, 2011

Tel Aviv - Jerusalem ?


Lately I have been thinking about moving back to Jerusalem. I had left town some time ago. First to Tel Aviv, then up north to Tiberias and Zfat and, after a period of three months back to Tel Aviv.

Most religious Jews living in Jerusalem don't like the big city at the coast. Too left - wing, too secular, not kosher enough, too this and that. While visiting Tel Aviv for one or two days, of course, the frum Jew won't like it too much. Compared to Jerusalem, Tel Aviv means hightech, civilization and I would look at it as the New York of the Middle East. However, the moment you live here, you start liking it. This, at least, happened to me although building up a community life on Shabbat may be a bit harder than in Jerusalem.

There are many things I miss in Tel Aviv and I had in Jerusalem. Chassidic Tishes, Shabbatot, Shiurim. Of course, you get all this in Tel Aviv too and if not, then in the nearby town of Bnei Brak. On the other hand, religious people in Jerusalem started going too much on my nerves. First of all, there is this pressure feeling in the air. Let alone the Shabbat and Chagim expectations. Go here, go there, go to the Synagogue. I am not even out of the bus yet but have to be ready for the Synagogue. Don't behave like this, do that. Are you fasting ? Why not ? Don't do that because its Shabbat. 

You know what: Many people in Jerusalem think that they are so holy but don't realize what kind of a damage they do. Leave people alone and let them their own personal freedom ! Not because we are from Tel Aviv but because we are individuals. If you want all your pressure and little personal ghettos fine, but there are other Jews (religious and secular) who have different lifestyles and priorities.

G - d created the universe and us for our enjoyment. If He wanted us to constantly sit in the Synagogue and pray, He wouldn't have created nature and all the beautiful things around. Too many Jerusalemites forgot how to live but just move around in their little pressure bubble. 

It may sound bad but I got used to Tel Aviv and love living in a big city. I am happy here although some things do bother me. Nevertheless, I feel at home and this is what counts. And why should I leave home in order to make myself depressed again ?

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