Societal betrayal, androcentrism, and pandemic parenting

In the New York Times, psychiatrist Pooja Lakshmin describes the societal betrayal of mothers during this pandemic. This concept resonates deeply with me. It is the underlying issue behind my four month absence from blogging.

Societal betrayal of mothers

This societal betrayal of the communal need to support raising children led me to reflect more intentionally on Judaism. It left me adrift in the breadth of androcentrism, throughout the history of written Jewish sources. The relentless focus on male lives, separate from familial obligation, is oppressive. My faith shattered and my soul could not imagine completing my intensive jaunt through psalm 25. Severed from the psalm and all forms of piety, I could not write.

Moving beyond biblical androcentrism

My way back to some semblance of wholeness came through my final presentation for a Tanakh course last semester. I realized I am not betraying myself by engaging with the Bible. Those narratives, composed by men, offering deepest insight into men’s lives. Simultaneously, the civilization grounded in the Jewish Bible and worldview transforms me.

Many sources of wisdom have problematic components, whether it be they were outspoken Jew haters, racist slave owners, or misogynists. Do we chuck all of it because they aren’t people we’d want to have dinner with?

Using imperfect sources

Can we separate the true wisdom from the husks? Is it possible to transform received wisdom with our deeper insight into the breadth of human potential?

My goal is to place wisdom into digestible formats for human growth towards the best versions of ourselves.

Towards that end, my next post will conclude my meditations on psalm 25. Then, I’ll try to go back to studying the psalter and writing shorter posts on each psalm along the way. L’Chaim!


Image by Alexas Fotos via Pixabay