Comes in many sizes, shapes, and forms.

Most of our modern societies use a legal definition related to calendar age regardless of the competence, ability, or responsibility of the individual. Other societies use a rite of passage to define adulthood. Sometimes that particular opportunity is generalized and available to all, in others it is limited by gender, status, or to a particular group’s membership.

From there one can branch out to other considerations: religion being a major factor in this arena.  when you go back in history – much of the determinations were made related to physiological attributes: when a boy went through puberty and was big enough and strong enough to do a “man’s work” or when a girl passed through menarche so that she would be considered an adult capable of childbearing. Of the three key factors – physical, mental, & emotional maturity – I think that all of us would agree that early to mid-teens do not qualify as adults in most of the current modern societies. 

Where am I going with all of this? A good friend (first met in around 1995 if I am not mistaken) finally had a chance as an adult to accomplish her Bat Mitzvah.  Health, opportunity, the pandemic I think all played a part in the delay. Her synagogue holds an adult class. This evening, the class (I think I counted nine) combined forces complete with Torah reading. The participants ranged from growing up in an orthodox community in Israel (Bat Mitzvah? Why? Count girls? Why?) through non-observant households while growing up to adult converts. 

Flying ½ way across the country wasn’t an option for me. But the pandemic has had some good long term outcomes, one of which is the addition and maintenance of zoom technology so that those of us at a distance can join in.


Print Friendly, PDF & Email

About Holly

fiber person - knitter, spinner, weaver who spent 33 years being a military officer to fund the above. And home. And family. Sewing and quilting projects are also in the stash. After living again in Heidelberg after retiring (finally) from the U.S. Army May 2011, we moved to the US ~ Dec 2015. Something about being over 65 and access to health care. It also might have had to do with finding a buyer for our house. Allegedly this will provide me a home base in the same country as our four adult children, all of whom I adore, so that I can drive them totally insane. Considerations of time to knit down the stash…(right, and if you believe that…) and spin and .... There is now actually enough time to do a bit of consulting, editing. Even more amazing - we have only one household again. As long as everyone understands that I still, 40 years into our marriage, don't do kitchens or bathrooms. For that matter, not being a golden retriever, I don't do slippers or newspapers either. I don’t miss either the military or full-time clinical practice. Limiting my public health/travel med/consulting and lecturing to “when I feel like it” has let me happily spend my pension cruising, stash enhancing (oops), arguing with the DH about where we are going to travel next and book buying. Life is good!
This entry was posted in Jewish Life. Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.