Take Action looks at ways to help you fight anti-Semitism by building bridges to our neighbors – including acquaintances, co-workers and fellow students.  One of our ongoing series is “Finding Commonalities” which is critical to building bridges.

We’re all human. Stereotypes and tropes come from our differences, but we find that our commonalities not only bring us together, but help us find fun ways to explore our differences. Most North Americans are very open to these kinds of conversations, so be our Valentine and reach out to someone!

Thank you to Board Member Shari Boyett for her contributions to this article.  It is dedicated in memory of a romantic guy who we all miss…

                                                                          – Marnie Fienberg, Editor


This is February and love is in the air!

Romantic love is the love for a potential partner or a spouse. It is a different kind of love than for your Creator, children or friends.  It’s important to distinguish that romantic love has a more specific meaning, and refers to intense attraction that involves the idealization of the other, within an erotic context, with the expectation of enduring for some time into the future. Each culture and religion think of this differently and it can be intensely private. Most of the major religions celebrate romance and love, but frown on sext outside of marriage.

Starting a conversation may seem to be touchy, but actually the Take Action Team finds that asking someone about the romance in their life is very positive and always brings a smile to their face. The following discussion questions are designed to help you get a conversation started.

Discussion Questions: Finding Common Ground on Romantic Love

How does your religion historically view romantic love? Was it viewed differently before a commitment/marriage vs. afterwards?

How does your religion view romance today? Is it viewed differently before a commitment/marriage vs. afterwards?

How does your religion or heritage view dating before marriage?  Is your experience different than your parents (or if applicable, the young adults in your life)?

Can you think of a famous poem, story or song that is the pinnacle or romantic love in your religion?

Valentine’s Day in Canada and the United States is a secular holiday for giving expensive flowers, candy and dinners to show romance. This isn’t how the holiday started. Do you like the idea of a secular holiday for romance?

Does your religion have a holiday that celebrates love and/or romance?

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