Tova Goldman
Tova Goldman

That Jewish Spirit

It is fascinating where you meet that “Jewish Spirit.” I’m not talking about meeting Jews. The Jewish people, like Coca Cola and McDonalds, seem to have spread out to the four corners of the earth. Rather, I’m talking about that spirit that resides within us all and has resonated and echoed throughout time. It is a spirit that is both timeless and endless. It crosses all ethnic boundaries, all social and economic conditions. This “Jewish Spirit” that we all have, it by-passes religious and cultural differences that exist among us. It is at the core of who we are and the essence of what we are all about.

It is that ragged marijuana smoking teenager that picks up a screaming baby to calm him down.

It is that ultra-Orthodox man who is handing out free cookies on the streets.

It is the girl with tattoos over every part of her body that gets up for an elderly man on the bus.  It’s the solider who feeds a stray cat on his watch. It’s the restaurant owner who feeds the homeless man.  It is a neighbor bringing over some plants.

It is someone making a meal for someone in need.  It is the person who has a water cooler by his house on a hot day, with cups by the side, and a sign saying: “self service, help yourself”.

If I were I to attempt to describe this authentic Jewish spirit, I would say it is a unique blend of courage, enthusiasm, generosity and warmth. Flavored with a healthy dose of chutzpah a dash of humor and delicately balanced with common sense and integrity. Lastly it would be that innate inability to be satisfied with life as status quo.

In a nutshell this “Jewish Spirit” is the curious taking the time to notice life and the adventurer propelled to action.  It is who we are and what we are all about at the deepest and truest levels of our souls.

Go ahead and notice the world. Take the time to notice, to care and to make a difference.

Don’t dare to be different. Dare to be you.

About the Author
Tova Goldman is happily married and raising 7 great kids. She is originally from Toronto, Canada and made aliyah 18 years ago. She has merited to live in this country and become "Israeli." Today, she lives in a small yishuv that has slowly become her home.