To Diaspora Jews, Israel can mean a lot of things: a deep connection to our ancestors, some nation in the Middle East that is mentioned in our prayers, or even nothing at all.
To Diaspora Jews, Israel can mean a lot of things: a deep connection to our ancestors, some nation in the Middle East that is mentioned in our prayers, or even nothing at all. For most of my life, I was that last option.
Israel was not a nation I felt any tie to, nor did I know why people had referred to it as the “homeland” of the Jewish people. I thought, “How can my homeland be a place that none of my family members had ever been to?” On my first trip to Israel, I discovered just how wrong I was. The second I exited the plane, I felt at home; I felt as though Israel was the place I was meant to be (as cliché as it sounds). So returning back to the main point of this blog, my goal on this trip is to connect on a deeper level to the land of my ancestors. I boarded that plane hoping to discover how I as a girl born in the 21st century am connected to the place that my namesake walked in biblical times. I tried to discover this in the United States but no matter how many chapters of Torah I read or prayers I sang it was never enough for me. These experiences only served to make me more desperate for an answer so I made the arguably insane decision to travel to the land of my ancestors to see if I could find where I tie in to the continuation of their story’s. My ultimate goal is to find that as I travel across Israel and study the history that happened between us standing at Sinai and me sitting at a desk while writing this. I am thrilled to have this opportunity to not only enjoy what is sure to be the most fun year of my life but to come into my own as a Jewish woman in her promised land.