...I have been able to do what many Jewish women in the world still cannot do: hold the Torah, our sacred scripture, in my arms. In the majority of Orthodox communities, women are not permitted to hold the Torah and they cannot be ordained as Rabbis--at least not yet.
While making the film "Today I Am A Rabbi," I had a profound and stirring experience. I was documenting three women, all in their 50's, who became the first graduates of the Academy for Jewish Religion (AJR) in Los Angeles.
|The author with Torah on Mt.Sinai|
The film I made was a conscious ode to women spiritual leaders everywhere, but it also was dedicated specifically to Jewish women who aspire to get closer to the Torah and become full partners in celebrating Judaism alongside of Jewish men. The poem, however, was not about equality of men and women in religious life. Instead it reflected my personal realization at how challenging it can be--even as I was clinging to the physical Torah in my arms--to embody and integrate Jewish wisdom into my life. One's commitment to that embodiment becomes a daily decision, at times a welcome one and at times too heavy to bear . . . until the next moment when we may get to experience the "sweet lightness of being."
Ruth BroydeSharone is an international inspirational speaker, filmmaker and freelance journalist passionate about generating grassroots interfaith work and teaching peace-building. Highly active in interfaith dialogue she lectures around the world from the UN in Geneva to churches, mosques and college campuses presenting her award winning film “God and Allah Need To Talk”. Broyde Sharone received a gold medal for her contribution to “cultural education,” from Fete D’Excellence, an international organization that recognizes the promotion of justice and peace globally. Her book MINEFIELDS & MIRACLES: Why God and Allah Need to Talk, is a captivating interfaith memoir (May, 2012.) She currently serves as a correspondent for the interfaith monthly e-zine, The Interfaith Observer. Formerly a Partner Cities Associate for the Parliament of the World’s Religions, Ruth is Co-Chair for the Committee for the Parliament in LA where she recently spearheaded a popular city-wide event called "Seeds of Peace," to bring together 16 diverse communities to share and demonstrate meditative and contemplative practices. Her love of poetry and songwriting began when she was 18 years old. Even though film and prose are her primary forms of communication, she turns to song and verse "when nothing else will quite do," she says. You may e-mail her at email@example.com.
~If you are interested in seeing your poetry appear in this blog, or submitting a poem by a woman that has inspired you, please send your offering to firstname.lastname@example.org Please include a short bio about the author and photograph. (If you pick to submit a poem by an other other than yourself, please include a little introduction telling us how and why the poem speaks to you.) I greatly look forward to hearing from you!~