Sitting down to write this post has been harder that I thought it would be. In a "tongue-in-cheek" way, I consider it an unjust and unfair requirement for any Moishehousnik to write something as short an concise as a blog post to express the whole range of experiences that convey living in a Moishe House. Most of the original ideas that I had for this blog post now lie now at the bottom of the Google Docs page, in the shape of unfinished sentences and quotes. This, in a sense, seems to be an expression of my general stance with Moishe House. Even now, as I try to write something, I have a mixture of feelings that block and hinder any possibility for self-expression. The reason for this seems to be the fact that that my involvement with the whole project has been more intimate and personal than I ever imagined it to would be.
My original intention was to write about the whole process that lead to the foundation of Moishe House Mexico City; however, as I started the long and inevitable process of putting together pieces of the story (it seems to be more of an odyssey to me now), my memory started playing tricks on me, acting completely indifferent to what I wanted to write about, and taking me places that I did not want to be in. All of a sudden, I was spiraled backwards towards the first moment I heard about the whole project. That moment, a weird explosion of feelings overtook me. I remembered, once again, the particularities of the circumstances surrounding my first encounter with the project. So, I wrote a little bit about it:
It was late 2008 and I was in Cancun,Mexico in a leadership conference organized by ROI. At the same time, my grandmother was dying in a hospital room in Houston, Texas. During that time, I was (and still am) exploring the possibilities of an alternative Judaism, one in which the personal, secular interests of our modern day society could coexist with the millenary traditions of our people. It was a bold venture, especially taking in mind the standards of Judaism in Mexico City at that time.
Now that I take more time to consider it, I think my whole involvement with Moishe House was even bolder than I consider it to be at a first glance. As the congress was taking place, the death of a family member would inevitably bring about a family crisis.
During that summit, a fellow ROI alumni and Moishe Housenik from Buenos Aires told me vaguely about the whole project, and it was during the Shiva of my grandmother that I wrote Moishe House the first mail from Mexico City. A week later, the first skype chat, and so on. During the year-long period of mourning i became obsessed by the whole idea of living in one, to the degree that I talked about it with everyone I could and programed, in my personal calendar, the dates that I would email them.
"He who perseveres, wins" they say in Mexico, and it just might be so. After nine months of ups and downs, I finally received the good news. Now,as I write this, we are in the phase of consolidating the Mexican Branch of Moishe House. Being convinced of the need we have, as local Jews, of an alternative community.
The period of mourning for my grandmother is now over, and with it, a new era of my life is opening for me. This is just one more aspect of Moishe House I could write about in the next blog post( and one that, with no doubt in my mind, will surely spark new trains of thoughts and feelings). As I said, it was a requirement from Moishe House International to write such a short reflection on the experiences that have marked us throughout the development of the whole project. It´s not enough, and I doubt that it will ever be.