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We're starting to keep kosher, can we start with small "baby steps"?

  

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Rabbi Gurkow: Welcome to the Rabbi's one on one chat room, how can I help you today?

Beginner: we're just starting to 'keep Kosher,' do you think, as i've heard and hope, it really is a step by step thing, we can take 'baby steps' and start searching labels but still not be using two sets of dishes, for example?

Rabbi Gurkow: not only can you but I encourage it

Rabbi Gurkow: otherwise, you may lose your way and your enthusiasim

Beginner: you overwhelm yourself, i know!

Beginner: and say 'to heck with this!!

Rabbi Gurkow: exactly

Beginner: but i can't ask Chabad to come kosher my kitchen until it has reached a specific point right?

Rabbi Gurkow: correct

Rabbi Gurkow: only you need to be careful

Rabbi Gurkow: to make sure that you are always moving forward

Beginner: careful in a zillion ways, which do you refer to?

Rabbi Gurkow: and not hiding behind the baby step mentality to take huge breaks along the way

Beginner: ah

Beginner: sure..... but you know what i will miss the most?

Beginner: here in xxxxxxxx a place called xxxxxxxx, outrageously expensive mexican food, they serve the freshest biggest shrimp, stuffed with cheese, wrapped with bacon and dipped in garlic butter, can you belive this ?!?!?! such a sin!

Beginner: anyway, thanks for chatting and thanks for the info.....wish me luck, i have no evidence of self discipline and am hoping to get some quick!

Rabbi Gurkow: actually

Beginner: yes?

Rabbi Gurkow: if you have a moment

Beginner: i do.

Rabbi Gurkow: i once met a couple who told me that they miss Boston blueberry pie most

Rabbi Gurkow: the point is that a person such as yourself

Rabbi Gurkow: will always be rewarded

Rabbi Gurkow: for not eating that shrimpo

Rabbi Gurkow: *shrimp

Beginner: yes, i like shrimpo better.

Rabbi Gurkow: :-)

Rabbi Gurkow: while somone like me will never be rewarded for that becuse I have no attraction to it

Rabbi Gurkow: I have never tried it and dont know what I am missing

Beginner: the baal Teshuvah stands close to G-d...or something like that? having tasted the pleasrues of, and willingly giving up same?

Rabbi Gurkow: so I will never be rewarded for not eating it

Rabbi Gurkow: exactly

Rabbi Gurkow: so every time you think of the shrimp, remember the opportunities that open before you

Beginner: oh, but how i envy, and always have those raised with orthodoxy, i resented my secular background even as a child.

Rabbi Gurkow: I understand and I wish you good luck

Rabbi Gurkow: and yet I envy the baal teshuvah for all he gives up

Rabbi Gurkow: I wish you goodluck and I enjoyed our chat

Rabbi Gurkow: I do have to go now

Beginner: bye and thanks!

Rabbi Gurkow: bye

Beginner: see ya!

All names, places, and identifying information have been changed or deleted in order to protect the privacy of the questioners. In order to preserve authenticity, the chat sessions have been posted with a minimum of editing. Please excuse typographical errors, missing punctuation, and/or grammatical mistakes which naturally occur in the course of informal chat sessions.

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COMMENTS

Starting to keep Kosher

Posted by: sherry flannigan, olive branch, ms on Dec 27, 2007

we started on the road to keeping kosher about 3 years ago. Recently I was talking to a friend about our desire to follow what the Torah says about what we can eat or not eat and that we all need to do it.

As i was explaining, It was like Hashem reminded me of how a baby will crawl on the floor and whatever it sees it will try to eat. Everything you give a baby goes in it's mouth first. As good parents, we instruct the child of what can be eaten and what can not be eaten; what is fit for food and what is not fit.

That is exactly what Hashem has done for us. As we came out of Egypt, where unfit things were eaten as food, Hashem had to instruct us as to what was really food and what was not. We are in the diaspora,in cultures who do not know Hashem and His Torah and therefore eat things not meant to be food,we have Hashem's instructions of what is food for us and what is not

I use this analogy to share with others and it makes it clear why we should do this.


Keeping Kosher - step by step

Posted by: naomi, Toronto, ON, Canada on Aug 18, 2009

When I was young, we used to keep kosher in the house, but not outside. It was cool to go out to eat on the weekends. However, around age 12, I kept seeing a conflict between what I was learning in Sunday School and what I was doing. I started telling my parents that I didn't want to eat meat out. Then, when I was ready, I gave up eating fish out.

Then other hot foods. Then everything else....except pizza,

since the pizza place was where my friends and I hung out.

It took several years until I gave it all up, which was tough,

since I lived in a small town where there were no Kosher food restaurants. Then I moved to New York, and life changed. It

was so much easier to live in a community where there were

lots of observant Jews, and it made becoming 'more Jewish'

so much easier! I also became Shabbat observant 'in stages'.Now, living in a comfortably observant community, I can't imagine life any other way! Don't put a time limit on yourself. You can do it!


RELATED CATEGORIES

Mitzvot » What are they?
Mitzvot » Kosher » About

Teshuvah
Repentance. Or, more literally, "return" to G-d. Teshuvah involves regretting the past and making a firm resolution not to repeat the offense.
Kosher
Literally means "fit." Commonly used to describe foods which are permitted by Jewish dietary laws, but is also used to describe religious articles (such as a Torah scroll or Sukkah) which meet the requirements of Jewish law.
Chabad
Chabad, an acronym for Wisdom, Knowledge, and Understanding, is the name of a Chassidic Group founded in the 1770s. Two of the most fundamental teachings of Chabad are the intellectual pursuit of understanding the divine and the willingness to help every Jew who has a spiritual or material need.
G-d
It is forbidden to erase or deface the name of G-d. It is therefore customary to insert a dash in middle of G-d's name, allowing us to erase or discard the paper it is written on if necessary.