The Celebrity Hebrew Tattoo
While not particularly interested in the private lives of celebrities (Okay, I'm not at all interested), I do admit to having a certain fondness for quirky stories like this one.
By now, I would imagine that some of you may be familiar with the term "Kabbalah" thanks to the likes of Madonna and Britney Spears. Now, I have to admit that I grew up with virtually no formal Jewish education to speak of. (In fact, the only reason my brother had a bar mitzvah was because my grandmother was still alive), but I did develop a nodding acquaintance with some rather esoteric Jewish subjects thanks to my father's Orthodox childhood, and one I knew was that Kabbalah was definitely not for civilians. In fact, I've since learned that it's only supposed to be practiced by Orthodox married man over a certain age.
So, imagine my astonishment when I discovered there was "Kabbalah for the masses." And as if that weren't bad enough, something I had always taken as gospel, which is that Jews were never supposed to be tattooed, also fell by the wayside the first time I was in Israel and saw a lifeguard with a tattoo, in the days before everybody and their mother had one. I have to admit I was pretty shocked because I had always heard that if you had a tattoo, among other things, you could never be buried in a Jewish cemetery, something I would have thought could be very problematic in Israel where, until recently, even atheists were buried in Orthodox cemeteries. (That's a subject I could write volumes about, but I'd have to be prepared to take the heat once I do). So, now it looks as if we've arrived at the point where Madonna can practice Kabbalah and Jews can get tattoos. What's the world coming to?