When did any mandatory reading change you? For me, it never did, although as an avid book reader, I can't say that any of the books I read in school over the last few years changed a lot about me. I wanted to take at least something out of them, so I decided to choose quotes that changed something in me so that my first period on Tuesdays was a little bit more bearable.
In August, we started reading Martin Fierro, a gaucho (cowboy) from Argentina who is alone, opposes the government, and goes through different challenges. Yes, it was as boring as it sounded. Nevertheless, one of the phrases from the book stood out to me. Although the phrase is already a common expression in Spanish, it reminded me of the power of siblinghood. "Let brothers be united because that's the first law. In true union for any time that goes, because if they fight each other, they get devoured from outside."
When I remembered this quote, I couldn't stop drawing parallelisms to our people’s history. Every time the Jewish people are fighting internally, we get attacked from the outside. It's a sad reality, but the one we need to live with every day. People try to devour us, but we are stronger than anything, even stronger than fear.
When we unite as one, my brother Alephs and my sister B'nai B'rith Girls, we are bigger than anything. We are united as one crew, never too many, never too strong. Yes, I just cited some of our Movements' most-known phrases. I couldn't omit them; they encompass some of the most important values I think we need to uphold as a community: taking care of one another. Let us take a moment to think about what we can do to bring our goal to a speedier realization that's straight out of BBG rituals. I want you to take some time to think about how you can help your brothers, sisters, and siblings. Before you do, and although I hate stopping you, let me ask: who are your siblings? For me, it's the Jewish people as a whole, from those putting their lives on the line in Israel to my friends from BBYO. You are all my siblings, and I urge us to be united.
When I say this, I might sound like a big dreamer. Even if I am one, dreaming of a united Jewish world is not crazy. The current situation has proven just how strong and connected we all are. I know these times are scary and overwhelming with unheard numbers of horrific news, and it looks like we are alone. You are not; you are always part of something bigger.
When you were reading, you may or may not have noticed that every paragraph started with a word that tried to put a time to something. It's because the world holds great danger, “when” makes everything seem far and out of reach. In reality, the possibility of change resides in us at all times. BBYO doesn't wait for the perfect time. We program, we fundraise, we educate, and we are there for one another. Like history, we are constantly moving because books like our history textbook or Martin Fierro aren’t going to change the world. We are.
Gal is a BBG living in Buenos Aires, Argentina who is in love with outer space.
All views expressed on content written for The Shofar represent the opinions and thoughts of the individual authors. The author biography represents the author at the time in which they were in BBYO.
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