Blending Traditions on Hanukkah

This entry was posted in Beliefs, Holidays, Practices on by .

Motherlode, the parenting blog at NYTimes.com, has a really interesting post with a new twist on the age-old problem of how interfaith families celebrate holidays. The Motherlode post goes into how same-faith families can still have plenty of issues to negotiate when parents come from different backgrounds:

There is an by essay Hadeel Masseoud, a lawyer in Atlanta, over on Babble.com, called A Very Muslim Christmas, which asks, “Would having a tree betray our faith?� The author, a Muslim child of Palestinian immigrants, grew up celebrating Christmas, then married an Iranian immigrant who saw such trappings as a “sell out.� hanukkah bushAnd more than one Jewish couple finds themselves bring different traditions from their shared religion this time of year.

I heard recently from Tami Kamin-Meyer, a lawyer with two sons, ages 10 and 14, living in Columbus, OH. “Both my husband of nearly 16 years and I are Jewish,� she wrote in an e-mail. “But his brand of Judaism is far more American than mine. My family is Israeli, and while I am a first generation American, my celebration of Jewish holidays, including traditions and attitudes, are closely aligned with Israeli customs rather than American.�

When their first child was born, her husband wanted to hang stockings in the living room, but she did not. (They don’t.) He is more comfortable with prayers and holiday songs in English, which she prefers them in Hebrew. (They incorporate a little of both.)

The post also talks about the forthcoming children’s book No Pig’s Brain Soup, Please! By Gail Greenberg about a little girl who thinks she has to choose between her Jewish and Chinese cultures, but learns that she does not.
Awesome!

Posted on December 22, 2008

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