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A Multi-Faith Carnival & Having It All

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This past weekend was a religious carnival.

With Passover starting on Friday and Easter on Sunday, Jonathan and I were in multi-faith heaven.  Having the first night of Passover fall on Good Friday was the perfect reminder of how aligned Judaism and Christianity really are.  Did you know that Good Friday aka the last supper was actually a Passover Seder?

On Friday we broke matzos at the Dougherty’s with close friends.  Jonathan lead the seder, telling us the story of the Jews exile from Egypt, acting out the story with buzzed glee (Did you know that tradition states that you have to drink 7 glasses of wine before the meal even starts?).

 

On Sunday we hosted an Easter potluck with egg dying, a jelly bean hunt and enough food to feed an army.

 

When I was engaged, a lot of people asked me if I was going to convert to Judaism.  To me, the answer was obvious, “Nope, we’re going to do both!”

That was either met with a pat on the back, or a look of deep concern for our future children.

Jonathan and I spent almost two years discussing life as a multi-faith couple and family as we prepared for marriage.  The reality was that both of us were very opened minded to begin with.  Jonathan grew up in a reform temple and I in a Congregational Church who served fritos and coke during for communion at one of our confirmation retreats (awesome right?).  To us, having a connection to a higher power was the most important, and our religious traditions were a way to learn about each other’s ancestry, upbringing, culture and give us opportunities to connect to the higher power even more deeply than we do in our daily lives.

A lot of people believe that the presence of one religion takes away from another.  If you celebrate Easter, it makes you less Jewish, or if you go to mass, it makes you a bad Buddhist.

I believe that 1+1=4.  The more experiences you add, regardless of how contradictory they may be, the more depth, love and joy you experience.

An amazing reflection of this belief at work was our friends and families reactions to our wedding ceremony.  Many of Jonathan’s Jewish family members commented that it was the most beautiful Jewish ceremony they’ve ever seen.  My Christian family said is was the perfect twist on a traditional Christian ceremony. Everyone said that they felt a strong spiritual presence and above all, it was so “us”. Mission accomplished.

This idea of more is MORE obviously goes way beyond religion.

I believe you can be on a budget and still go to the French Laundry.
I believe you can be trying to lose weight and still eat chocolate.
I believe you can be madly in love and still flirt with your waiter.

In fact, I believe that a budget is only possible if you have moments of feeling wealthy.
I believe that losing weight is only possible if you enjoy your favorite foods.
I believe that lasting love is only possible when we know we still got it.
I believe that the deepest relationship with a higher power means an open heart to all traditions.

This week I want to end the mentality of “either or”. And instead embrace a life of “I can have it all. More is MORE.”


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