Judaism Interview Report Paper

1912 words - 8 pages

Jordan StaatsComp Stud 2370, Fall 2014Interview Paper (Field Report #1)Puja, Monday at 9:10I first met Ben Rosenberg when I was 14 years old. We joined the same central Ohio travel soccer team, and played together for several years. Ben grew up in Dublin, a generally wealthy Columbus suburb only fifteen minutes from my hometown of Marysville. Though Dublin is fairly diverse, it is not home to a particularly large Jewish community. I did not know Ben was Jewish when I first met him, but after spending plenty of time with him and his parents, I learned much about his religious background and traditions. He was one of the only Jewish kids I knew growing up. Ben is now studying finance at Kent State University. I still stay in fairly regular contact with him, and was excited about the opportunity to learn more about his religious identity, opinions, and beliefs.What is your religion?I'm Jewish.To you, what does it mean to be Jewish?It's about family, and the culture… and the traditions. Doing good… and being good… Helping other people.Do you like being Jewish?Yeah, I like it. I'm proud of it; it's who I am. As a kid maybe not as much, just cause I knew it was different, and I wanted to be like everyone else… celebrate Christmas and stuff. But now that I get it, the culture and tradition, I like it.What are some traditions that you practice?The holidays and stuff… So, Passover, Yom Kippur… Chanukah, Rosh Hashanah... There's more, but yeah, the holidays… We always go visit family in New York every year. And then synagogue and Shabbat and everything.Do you have a sacred text that you read?I mean, the Torah. But I don't really read it, only when I go to synagogue.How often do you attend synagogue?I went growing up and everything. But now that I'm in college, I don't go very much anymore. I'll go with my parents when I go home.Why is that?It all just gets kind of old after a while…. And there's other stuff going on; I get busy… With school and work and stuff. I guess I'm kinda taking a break from it all, you know?How often do you think about religion?Not very often. I don't really think I'm religious and everything, you know? You grew up Jewish?Yeah.Your family members are too?I'm an only child, but yeah, my parents are pretty traditional Jewish.How has your family's beliefs shaped yours?I always had the traditions and stuff growing up. We went to synagogue and they taught me about God and we prayed and did Shabbat at home… we always had the holidays and everything. Family is really important to me.Do you have close community with others that practice this religion?There weren't really many Jewish families in town growing up, but my best friend was Jewish, so that was cool. I have some good friends here [at Kent State] that are Jewish too, so that's cool too, to have them around and to have the same like, background and beliefs.How does this community impact your daily life?We just have...

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