Sunday, March 13, 2011

A Mess of Contradictions

At my grandparents' house on my dad's side, they have a shelf filled with encyclopedias, theories of evolution, and Shakespeare. The shelf right next to that is filled with prayer books and bibles. They just offered to buy tickets to see Billy Elliot with me, have taken me to a symphony that had an opera song about a guy dying from AIDS, and never fail to ask if I want company at synagogue. They seem to be walking contradictions, and I'm quite convinced that I've inherited that.

Take the scene right now:  I am sitting on my bed dressed in a long skirt that brushes the top of my feet and a v-neck t-shirt through which my bra is somewhat visible. I'm listening to American Idiot. On my expansive bookshelf in a place of honour is the Old Testament and prayer books as well as His Dark Materials. 

Now, if we move to my insides it gets more confusing. I am more religious than my parents have ever been, but I'm striving to move away from the small (understandable) prejudices my family have that come in the package of being one of the most persecuted religions in history. I spent my time in Jewish Day School being the one who settled debates about religion, Hebrew, and laws, and now I'm the one asked about philosophy and science. I'm still more observant than many people who are still at the large Jewish high school in the area, although I chose to not ask my parents to send me to the Jewish high school.

Besides religion: 
A) I have quite a traditional view of marriage and relationships, but I'm questioning my sexuality.
B) When I hear about anything, I view it with two sides that are almost completely detached from each other. One is my empathetic side, which wants to cry. The other side views it with a wholly scientific interest, which worries me.
C) I like lacy things. I would wear a ball gown all the time if I could have full mobility in it. Mobility to dig in soil, play with bugs, carry canoes, run, roll down hills, and take apart machines. 

I admire how my grandparents manage to be so completely at peace with themselves, with the contradictory-person syndrome. It's amazing to me how they manage to make both religion and science such a huge part of their lives, all at once. I'm starting to realise that science and religion can coexist. Like Albert Einstein said, "Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind."

<3 Gabi


  1. Wonderful post.

    I really want to do that too, to make them coexist. But it's difficult and I think for the most part, I'm kind of moving through life with them apart.

    There's this chasm between them and I don't want to face the contradictions so I try not to think about them.

    Love the quote too.

  2. Since I consider myself both pretty religious and very scientifically orientated, I try to reconcile both religion and science. And for the most part, it's worked...for the most part. I still haven't figured out what to think about evolution. I mean, I believe it, but I don't know if I'm supposed to...
    My chemistry teacher is also really religious, which shows that reconcilation (or however you misspell that) between science and religion is possible!
    My Islamic school teacher told us about that Einstein quote two years ago!

    Great post!

  3. Hi!! Second comment today (I guess you can call this some sort of attack) I feel about the same way about religion and science as you do. And I'm also Jewish (orthodoxish) In response to comment above, about evolution, I think that's the method on HOW God created the world. A possibility (which I sort of made up) is that humans were created with the animals. On the sixth day, he added a special ingredient which made humans really human. As the centuries go by(until Moshiach), we are getting closer to our animal side. That's why it is getting harder to tell the difference between animals and humans nowadays. That's a possibility of how evolution can fit into the creation of the world. I'm not an expert, but this is based on what I know. I guess this explanation can also fit with other religions which have the "Old Testament." Religion is awesome =) I love your blog, you are so funny!!!


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