Friday, March 21, 2008

We love stories

I went to Sam's class in December to read a few Chanukah books. After I read to the kids, I gave out some chocolate gelt and some dreidels. I got a little excited talking to this group of kids; third grade really seems like an age when you can start engaging them in some higher order thinking. For most of these kids, Sam is the first Jewish person they've ever met. They've maybe, vaguely heard of Chanukah, and the idea that some people in the world don't celebrate Christmas is fairly foreign to them.

So after I read the books I shared a little bit about how old Judaism is. How Judaism has been around since before the Greek and Roman empires. Sam wrote the Hebrew characters from the dreidel on the board, so they'd know how to play. And then my mouth was going faster than my brain. I rhapsodized that human beings have always wanted to share stories. Before the first alphabet, we told stories orally, or drew our stories on cave walls. My Classics major self wanted in on the action, and I drew some ancient Greek letters on the board, getting them to guess which letters in our alphabet they matched. Sam and I told them what the first few letters of the Hebrew alphabet are, and hey, check that out, they sound just like the first two letters of ours (not to mention that Greek alphabet I'd just shown them). I was fairly exhilarated at this point, none of this was in my plan for the afternoon. I gushed a wee bit longer, about how I hoped that each of them would one day stumble upon the subject matter that just absolutely light their souls on fire.

To be human is to have a story, and to want to share that story with others. The stories we tell now are in homage to the original story tellers. I get giddy when I think of how we are linked to the people of long ago.

Because I believe that sharing stories is an essential part of being a homo sapiens, I'm always surprised to read articles in which the author claims not to understand blogging. Blogging gives people the chance to share their story. Stories are how we connect, and it is no surprise to me, that in an era where so many of us live far from our families or our childhood hometowns, that we would use new technology to help us tell our stories, and connect with others.
These posts, (Jen Lemen, Bipolarlawyercook, and another one from Bipolarlawyercook)
by two of my favorite blogging ladies, have been in the back of my mind for ages now, and I think, in some small way I've touched on the pieces of these posts that I really connected with.

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