August 2014 was an eventful summer. A vacation in Portugal, my thirtieth birthday (thank you so much everyone for the birthday wishes!!), and my colleague’s wedding. I pick the last one to expand upon, because it was a whole new set of cultural experience!

The wedding was my first, and the first American-Jewish wedding. It was heartwarming, full of affection, and thoughtfully made by the couple. I got curious and fascinated by all those Jewish rituals. The wedding canopy, the couple circling each other, reciting, candles, wine, bread, poems, signing the document, blessings, breaking a glass… lots of dancing and singing at the reception. I think the style was a mixture of Jewish and non-Jewish parts. I am not able to distinguish correctly, yet one thing that was clear to me was that the rituals made the ceremony meaningful, full of affection and happiness, and reflected their bright future.

I sensed love, hope, family in a somewhat larger sense – like community, and peace. The feelings took my mind to a class I was taking in grad school, called “Peace perspectives of world religion”. I am not an atheist, but more of agnostic type than religious. I learnt in the class that every religion has peace perspective in its teaching, dogma, or message… whatever people call. Yes it may be a question of hermeneutics, but I think what I want to realize here is that experiencing in it is drastically different from reading, discussing, and understand about it. It was a special moment of a two persons’ and their families’ lives, creating the meaning by themselves.

I am so happy to have experienced that and happy for the two and their future.

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