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In religious [observant] Jewish communities, how much room or tolerance is there for secular interests and desires? I live near a large Jewish community, and from an outside perspective I have the impression that with the emphasis on [following the norms, such as] getting married, upholding family values, and [engaging in] Torah study, and everything that goes with living in a such a community, following their [community members'] heart and doing something they may want to do, such as going travelling or learning an instrument, is either not considered acceptable, or not their 1st priority. In addition to this I can't help but think that they view gentiles and the secular world with a touch of suspicion. What do religious Jews think of the secular world and secular values? Is there room and tolerance for them to follow their interests, or do they have to conform only to Jewish community values and expectations? I don’t mean this to be a rant, and apologies if it is seen as one - its just something that’s on my mind and I would be interested to know the truth.




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