Jewish Journal


September 27, 2010




"Ha Kadosh Barchu-I am Transgender."

I read a book during Yom Kippur services this year. Not a prayer book, or even anything on Judaism, just a novel, albeit a good one. I felt like a jerk, but it was either bring a book or not show up at all, and honestly, I wasn’t prepared to deal with that particular guilt.

It’s the liturgy that does me in, the persistent gendering of Gd, and the feeling that I can’t shake that everyone around me is faking the connection. Let’s be honest, I usually am, in some capacity, and this time of year. Of course, I’m supposed to be wrestling with text, I’m supposed to be uncomfortable, it’s supposed to be hard work, everyone is feeling these things. Fine. In spite of this, tr I was totally unable to even open the Silverman machzor, where Gd is a man, and the King (I know, I know, it’s the season.)  I can’t even handle the concept of Gd as a woman, I just keep thinking about the sheer gall of humans being able to decide that Gd, an idea, a presence, an unknowable source of awe, can be defined, can be attributed power, via something as limited and insidious as the gender binary.

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