The Jewish Birthright

I thank God all the time for my religion. The birthright of Jews is an amazing thing. If you are Jewish, you probably have heard of Birthright or Taglit at least once in your life. It sounds like a complete hoax, a program with a secret agenda to turn you into an Orthodox Jew and/or Zionisit and completely change your life–why else would it be free?! I see how it is very easy for people to believe this, but it isn’t. It really isn’t. It is the most beautiful gift I have ever received in my life.

Birthright is a program for young Jewish adults that have never been on an organized trip to Israel before. They believe, as a Jew, it is your birth right to visit the Holy Land. Just by being born Jewish, you deserve to go. So, they pay for you to experience Israel so there’s no excuse for you not to go. That’s right. They fly you and other people close in your age (18-26 only) to Israel for ten days, pays for all your accommodation and activities, gives you the history your people, Judaism and the Chosen Land. They spend thousands of dollars to pay for YOUR experience. You only have to pay for your food, transportation to the airport, and any souvenirs,  really. Sounds crazy right? The only catch is you have to identify as Jewish (pass several interviews) ((but even if you barely know anything about Judaism and aren’t involved in it anymore, like I was, its still okay)) and it is expected that you ‘give back to the community’. The purpose of the trip is to essentially reconnect you to Judaism and Israel, or at least have you learn something about it. Of course, you are not forced to do anything! It is their great hope that you come back and/or strengthen your religion, but what you do after the trip is solely up to you.

I went on Birthright in the Summer of 2011, and it

changed

my

life.

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