This is part 4 of the 11 part series on the writer’s journey back to Judaism. For the other parts, read this.
Coming back to America was hard. I was no longer a little girl and had to find my own way. I picked a college with lots of farmland, so I would feel like I was on my beloved kibbutz. I had a newfound love and loyalty for Israel and became quite an Israel defender.
In college, I visited a local Reform Temple. The teaching, I will never forget. I can’t tell you the parsha that week but I remember watching Star Wars! The Rabbi played a clip of the end of the film, spoiler alert;) and asked the question, according to Judaism, “did Darth Vader repent?”
These kind of questions were not odd to me, as I grew up watching movies in Hebrew school. One movie always stood out to me, called “The Wave.” It was a film about students who could not understand the Holocaust. How could people be so discriminating against innocent people, the students asked. They felt they could never act in the way the Germans did! The teacher attempted to prove how someone could fall into such evil by doing a social experiment of their own.
The students, unbeknownst to themselves, were taught to discriminate against each other. Slowly, they were all caught up in hate! At the end of the movie, the teacher revealed who their true leader had become. On a large screen, Adolf Hitler’s words blared at them, and the students were ashamed of how they had turned on their community like that had.
Years later, the booming voice of the enemy of the Jewish people would shock me to reality as well, and draw me back to my people.
But, before that day, I had many roads to go down far from home.
To Be Continued . . .