suspectclass: (Default)
( Oct. 18th, 2005 09:29 am)
Questions by [livejournal.com profile] una_sorella

1. why do you have tattoos of birds on your back?

When Holly and I broke up, I did an evaluation of the preceding few years. I realized that I was carrying around a lot of pain, that I'm not very good at letting go. I had really realized for the first time not that long before, that everything passes, everything changes. This was a big part of my coming back to the Church -- everything passes but G*d. Everything changes but G*d. The birds themselves were inspired by the image on the back wall of the Methodist Church my step-mother went to -- birds flying up over an image of a cross in front of a rainbow. It's also a reminder of one of my favorite hymns: "His Eye is On the Sparrow." So, lots of imagry, very Christian, and a reminder that everything is ephemeral, always. Thus, a permanent image of birds that are always about to leave my back.

2. what do you love best about chicago?

Lake Michigan, hands down. Going to the Point, driving along Lake Shore drive, going to North beach, living close enough to see the world drop off to the east -- you name it. I love the lake.

3. why did you start studying russian?

Cuz I'm a big pinko. And a daddy's girl -- my stepfather is proficient. Also, my academic eyes tend to be bigger than my stomach.

4. if you could sleep with any of your friends (and have no awkward emotional consequences) who would it be?

Um, there are several. All either in my community here, or in Northampton. So I'd really rather not say. I don't think it's a terribly big secret, and certainly it doesn't take much to get me to confess, but recording such crushes for posterity seems like a bad idea.

5. i'm interested in your thoughts regarding conversion, judaism, catholicism. i know this is a (relatively) public space, so if you don't want to reply, that's fine. but i'd still like to talk with you, if you wouldn't mind, as someone else who sometimes thinks that she hasn't found the right path quite yet.

I'd much rather talk about this than who I want to sleep with!

My belief system runs essentially thus: I'm fairly unconcerned with what happens after death. I can't know and don't think it's the point anyway. All you can control is what you do on earth, and you're bound to a system of ethics regardless of whether it's getting you into heaven. I think that living a good life is far more important than how or what or whether you worship. I don't believe there's one true path. I value debate and questioning far more than faith, and I value family and culture and history as being an important aspect of religion -- religion for me is as much about the culture and community as it is the specific practices. Also, ritual is vital to me as a structure for one's religion, and the hard-core hierarchy of the Catholic Church, as well as the secrecy and anti-intellectualism are driving me around the bend as much as any specific dogma.

In some ways the idea of leaving the Church, and more specifically, converting to Judaism, feels like a huge departure for me, and in others it feels like an opportunity to come home. I know there's much I'll miss about the Church, but I don't think most of it is essential to my religious practice. I don't know yet, of course. I need to talk to a rabbi, I need some guidance in how to think about this and how to make my decision in a responsible, informed way. I think I already have, but if it's really the right decision, it will bear up under further reflection. I go back and forth between feeling excited at the prospect of having a religious life that fulfills me -- something that can be a part of my whole life instead of leaving me feeling divided and conflicted constantly -- and mourning the potential loss of so many things that have been meaningful to me, from silly things like ham to more serious ones, like the pride my grandmother feels for me in all I've done in the Catholic community at Smith. Catholicism has become the thing that my mother and I can connect on, and I don't know what will happen when we talk about this. I'm kind of dreading Easter. At the same time, I've felt drawn to Judaism my whole life, so as scary as it is in some ways, it feels really right when I talk about it (which I've been doing a lot of). I've thought about it off and on for so many years that it's wonderful to say it out loud. It feels like coming out again.

Comment to get interviewed.
.

Profile

suspectclass: (Default)
suspectclass

Syndicate

RSS Atom

Most Popular Tags

Page Summary

Powered by Dreamwidth Studios

Style Credit

Expand Cut Tags

No cut tags