March 14th, 2008

Willow

Witnesses

See that's what you get for staying home with a headache - you get a quick doorknock for conversion. And Witnesses know Jewish houses and they consider it a challenge. But seriously, after 32 years of studying my religion, is a pamphlet and 15 mins of talking *seriously* gonna convert me? We ain't a challenge for no reason.

But seriously ... don't start engaging with me on my religion unless you are *as well* versed in it as me. Especially if you're wanting to point out inconsistencies in mine that will suddenly make me *see the light*. He used one of the names of Gpd about 35 times, knowing that as a Jewish person, that would would be offensive to me. And eventually I just pointed it out because why would I be even remotely interested in what you have to say after you continually keep offending me. Then I got told it's 3 letters in Ancient Hebrew and I'm like, "yo dude, I speak ancient Hebrew and it's 4 letters". And then I took a cool tack with the "Moses didn't personally write the 5 Books of Moses, he passed em down via Oral Tradition" technicality so I could be all like "don' be telling me my religion dude". His trainee young man tried "We use Gpd's name because we are encouraged to think of him as our friend and we call our friends by their names". So I went with "I consider Gpd my friend too but I am not his equal. I wouldn't call the Queen 'Liz' now would I?"

I actually find doorknocking to convert offensive. Especially when you open the door and they've worked out you're Jewish and you can see them cracking their knuckles for the potential extra points if they are successful. And like ... as if that would *even* work?! You're Jewish enough to put mezuzahs on the doorframe but a 10 p pamphlet would suddenly make you see the light?

Given this wee rant here ... I find other things I am grappling in my life to be rather interesting. I stood there and I said that faith is unerring so ahh... you're not gonna move me here. Otherwise, I wouldn't have faith. What does that mean (to me) ... in other relevant contexts? And was this some kind of sign?
Willow

hmmm

Just ranted to my mother about the Witnesses and she laughed and said "why do you bother? You and your grandfather, he always used to do that too."

Maybe that's the sign...

*grins*

My reply was ... well I like to be "batter up" and then send em back to the bench. It's good to test myself about what I know. (They always quote scriptures that we don't consider to be the most meaningful or the ones we don't use daily)
Willow

Unsure about this but here it is

Been agonising all day about whether to blog this. It's not the done thing to expose dirty laundry:

The Australian Jewish News also reported that on Saturday last week, Rabbi Beck addressed the community and said they should not consider Mrs Leifer guilty of any crimes because there had been no investigation. He told the congregation that if they discussed the matter, it would be considered lashon hara (malicious gossip), the paper reported.

http://www.smh.com.au/articles/2008/03/13/1205126151573.html

Mrs Leifer has left the country with a lot of money after being accused of molesting several young girls who were in her care. The community has repeatedly asked for clarification as to which authority the accusations have been reported to, to no response. It seems, from reading this article, that Mrs Leifer will not be facing charges and I wonder what kind of assistance the girls in question will receive.

It's important to note that Jewish people belong to a variety of smaller communities that span the whole political and religious spectrum. This particular group are at the ultra-orthodox end. What troubles me about the response here is that it is such a flagrant repeat of the kind of oppression and sexism that we have long be fighting to overturn. The girls who have been molested are not encouraged to come forward and report the crimes and are further shut up and then punished if they do come forward by not being able to get married. Such a traditional form of control and power over the victims.

Here, the community at large are being blackmailed into not dealing with this issue in the way it should be - by being threatened like (abused) children that if they even discuss it, it will be considered Lashon Ha'Rah. The direct translation for this is "Evil Tongue" and it is a sin that can be considered worse than murder - and is something we spend much time repenting for on Yom Kippur. I'm personally outraged that this woman is not being investigated and thus she cannot be considered guilty of any crimes and thus the community commits a crime by demanding she be investigated (and punished). This is such an outrageous abuse of power and influence. It is so revoltingly traditional abuser behaviour and by acting thusly, the Rabbi now becomes an accomplice, in my mind.
Willow

Armed and ready

My visit today prompted me to do a bit of chasing up on some information I'd heard about a couple of weeks ago - that JWs believe that only 144 000 people will be going to heaven. I couldn't find much on the official webpage about "anhilation" - I guess that probably is a bit tougher to sell than your other kinds of heaven pitches (42 virgins waiting for you or whatever). I found this on wiki http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/144%2C000 and I'm all ready for my next door knockers - obviously I currently don't get a place but if I was to convert, how well do I improve my chances?

I always think conditional places in heaven is a good way to spot a scam religion :-D
ETA: The Nazis made them wear purple triangles. That's somewhat ironic considering they made Homosexuals wear pink triangles and when I was at the Watchtower site today, one of the articles was titled something along the lines "Homesexuals, how to avoid being one"
Willow

More on how things are different

So I'm baking 500 biscuits for Swancon. I have 85 in the freezer from last week. And when the ones in the oven come out in 15 mins, I'll have baked 150. Got a bit still to go.

But the funny thing about this exercise is how I discovered how easy whipping up a batch of biscuits is. Sure, it involves having all the ingredients in the pantry but once you set yourself up for baking with the basics, it's not a big deal. I never baked biscuits even once in the old house. I love baking. I baked muffins there. And in houses we lived in before the last one, I often baked cakes. This kitchen has a lot of space and that definitely helps. It's funny though because I haven't actually unpacked all my kitchen boxes and have not set up my kitchen particularly well yet.

So ... is it the kitchen that's different or is it me and my new lifestyle? I even bought the new Delicious magazine this week and have vague plans to make some of those thing.