metapost: more on the apparently not whiny rant
My buddy Challahman posted my talk in his dKos diary and at Street Prophets. Some interesting comments back, both non-Jews moved by the spirit of Yom Kippur, and an orthodox Jew noting that "if more people would follow Hashem's actual words, we wouldn't need the new ones."
I guess so, but my point was more that liberal Jews should act with serious devotion and seriousness about those things that we know are right. I respectfully submit that the orthodox are similarly failing to observe Hashem's word. Not more, not less, just differently; see "feed the hungry" and "protect the natural world," et al, ad nauseam. It's something that brings us together: most people, especially the middle class, have real trouble challenging the materialism and selfishness and apathy of our time.
Anyway, I wasn't trying to add new mitzvot to "Hashem's actual words," just calling attention to those of Hashem's words that we don't take seriously enough. Even those who don't believe in Hashem know what is right, and those people in my own community responded strongly to the concept of "commanding each other."
But I digress--few readers here need convincing of the seriousness of liberal Judaism. The point is, as another comment put it, that "Once people have seen that they won't be alone, they will follow. I have tremendous respect for people, be they politicians or leaders of industry or just friends, who are willing to put themselves out there simply because it's the right thing to do." Amen. Underline: we do know how to act rightly. We are afraid to be the crazy ones. We need to know that others will join us. Do more than just enough. Do your part. Period.