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  Dating in a Multicultural World  
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Dating in a Multicultural World

The United States is a dynamic blend of a myriad of backgrounds and cultures. So, it is no surprise that many singles are at an interesting place as they seek to understand how their traditional culture intersects with the general one around them. Traditionally Orthodox Jews have hired matchmakers to find them the right spouse but it seems that this is not working the same way it used to as there has been a recent rise in divorce within the Jewish community. What factors are lending to this shift in what has been employed for so long?

For one, it is nearly impossible to sequester and preserve one's culture outside of their home country. When faced with so many kinds of people groups in the same community, we are forced to find a level of common ground that we can all function on. Trying to apply a tradition that worked in the past is akin to a man in mid-life crisis attempting to wear what he wore in high-school—it just will not work. If there is to be any success, there needs to be relevance to the current context.

The current generation is all about satisfying "what I want." In the past a matchmaker might have been able to successfully match a couple together that would last in a long healthy relationship and marriage. The same couple today is met with voices all around saying that what you want and feel are of utmost importance, to do whatever it takes to be happy, regardless of the fallout. This attitude is glorified in film where marriage destroying affairs are deemed acceptable if one ends up happier. Where is the self-sacrifice? It has turned into worship of "me" rather than seeking to see what one can do to make the other happy.

Another variable introduced is the fact that both men and women are striving for career goals. In today's society women are out to work and not necessarily content to giving up their singles status for marriage and family. Or when they are ready, a bit of time has gone by and suddenly their eligibility seems to be running out. This can lead to a rush to settling for a mate they are not completely in love with, potentially coming to the point of resentment and unhappiness manifest in detachment, affairs and divorce.

In this ever changing world we have to remain aware of what is going on around us and not assumed that because we did something yesterday it will still work today. We have to observe carefully and do our best to be relevant without compromising what is important to our core. With dating, we need to examine why these match making traditions were developed, digging to the root of the situation to determine we deem most important. Once we discover what is valued most then we can apply these to this post-modern context. Love and relationships cannot be confined to a system; we have to remember that while these guide us they should not conquer us.

Posted by eDatingCentral.com Aug 2, 2008 10:34 am


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