This past Rosh Chodesh was the first time that the Torah was read in the women’s section of the Kotel. It was very nice. A young girl celebrated her Bat Mitzvah, she was called up to the Torah and to be honest, she did a great job!
Of course, the Women of the Wall were not to come without drama! On the men’s sides, there was hissing, TV reporters, including Al Jazerra, and all in all a tension-filled environment that can only happen at the Kotel with the Women of the Wall.
Just days earlier, Egged busses carrying WoW ads were targeted and vandalized because of the passion that some have against this group.
When it comes down to Jewish Halacha, women are 100% allowed to wear Tefilin, but are not obligated, kind of like sitting in a Sukkah on Sukkot.
I have no problem with women wearing Tefilin. I do it everyday. I don’t do it once a month, I don’t do it in the spotlight of ire, in the best place to confront or provoke. I wear my tefilin everyday, be it at the Kotel, my Yeshiva, my home or my shul. I wear Tefilin this way because to me, Tefilin is not a device to push political views. Tefilin is one way that I connect to Hashem, not push my ideologies on others.
I do see a world that men and women get Aliyot, wear Tefilin and live Halachic lives that promote gender equality. Its a world that most women wear Tefilin daily. A world where the same Women of the Wall congregate not monthly but daily to feel their connection with Hashem. Until this world is created, please stop disgracing Tefilin. That’s our mitzvah, Am Yisrael’s mitzvah.