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Tel Yehudah Stories

Emma Caligor

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This summer I have discovered what being a Jew means to me. Camp Tel Yehudah has taught me that it is okay to practice Judaism in whichever way I choose.

In my Chug’s Peulot (Activities) this session, we discussed many aspects of Judaism that enable us to strengthen our understandings of our personal Jewish identities. In one peulah, we each finished the sentence: I am jewish because… As I looked around the room and read everyone’s answers, I saw that they were all different. Reading them made me realize that each of us has our own way of being a Jew and that no two people have the same Jewish identity. It’s amazing that at Tel Yehudah it’s not just okay to have different opinions, but it’s embraced in all parts of camp. This is not just limited to our Jewish identities, but also to all opinions expressed.

Every week during Israel Update we are not just told of what is happening abroad, we are encouraged to share our own opinions. Most of the time there are many conflicting views and there is rarely an issue that every person feels the same way about. From this I learned that I need to understand all of the other conflicting opinions around me in order to solidify my own thoughts. I hope that in this coming year I will be able to implement many of camp’s values, specifically that of pluralism, in my own life.

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