Archive for December, 2011

One night you go to sleep in Israel….and you wake up at the back of a bus

December 19, 2011 3 comments

Some recent events:

  • Bowing to ultra-Orthodox pressure and fears of vandalism, advertisers have stopped displaying images of women in Jerusalem.
  • A few months ago several observant IDF soldiers walked out of an official IDF event when a fellow female soldier began to sing. The Ashkenazi Chief Rabbi of Israel, Yonah Metzger, justified their actions and asked that only men sing at military events where observant men are present.
  • During a visit to the Golan heights to watch an exercise of the Golani Brigade’s 51st Battalion, Barak and Gantz made jokes at the expense of female soldiers  in the unit and Barak’s female media officer. They then threatened the press not to air the footage.  
  • In September at an award ceremony held by the ministry of health two recipients of an award for qualitative compositions in the field of medicine and religious law, Prof. Hani Maayan and Naama Holzer, were asked not to go up on stage to receive the award (and their full names were not mentioned) so as not to offend any rabbis present.  As infuriating, the award recipients had to sit in a seperate area with the rest of the female audience, who were separated from the men. 
  • Most recently, Tanya Rosenblit got on a bus from Ashdod to Jerusalem and sat behind the driver. Some of the ultra-orthodox passengers demanded that she move to the back of the bus, and she refused. One passenger stood between the doors so the driver couldn’t close them. A policemen was called and he asked Tanya if she would be willing to respect these men by moving to the back of the bus. She refused. I can imagine that how hard this was, staying calm in this situationa yet refusing to budge.

Things are turning…sinister. And I don’t like it, not one bit. This is not a women’s issue, this is a human issue, this is a democratic issue, and it should enrage, inflame, infuriate ALL of us, men and women alike.

I don’t know what it is with all these patriarchal religions and their hate and disdain for half of the human population, but here’s what I have to say about it:

We are not going anywhere. We are half of this world.

You don’t want to hear us? You don’t want to see us?  Go sit in a dark corner of a dark room in a dark house. Lock the door, throw away the key. Because that’s where you belong.


Gibran on children

December 6, 2011 1 comment

As a mother, I struggle to find my path. Sometimes I lie awake and wonder if I am worthy of these amazing girls. If I am good enough to be their mother. If I can find the wisdom and strength and patience to to navigate their childhood and bring them through to adulthood happy and healthy.

When I’m having one of these moments, this poem by Kahlil Gibran about children often makes my mind go…quiet, and calm. For a bit.


Your children are not your children. They are the sons and daughters of Life’s longing for itself.

They come through you but not from you, And though they are with you yet they belong not to you.

You may give them your love but not your thoughts, For they have their own thoughts.

You may house their bodies but not their souls, For their souls dwell in the house of tomorrow, which you cannot visit, not even in your dreams.

You may strive to be like them, but seek not to make them like you. For life goes not backward nor tarries with yesterday.

You are the bows from which your children as living arrows are sent forth.The archer sees the mark upon the path of the infinite, and He bends you with His might that His arrows may go swift and far.

Let your bending in the archer’s hand be for gladness; For even as He loves the arrow that flies, so He loves also the bow that is stable.

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