A rabbi ordered a pair of pants and the village tailor brought them after a long time. The exasperated rabbi asked: “How is it possible that it took God only six days to create such a complicated world and it took you more than six weeks to make one pair of pants?” The tailor said: “Rabbi! How can you compare? Take a look at the mess that God made, and then take a look at this fine pair of pants!”
There’s always a gap between what we want to change in the world and what we can actually do, but I believe every little act counts. Being a Jewish leader means doing my best to offer my art, storytelling, to connect people. Inviting someone into a story provides more understanding than an argument. It opens the path to compassion and dialogue. It is through hearing each other’s stories, opening up and sustaining dialogue that we can create relationships and bring change. Even a small stitch in a fine pair of pants can help make our world a more peaceful place.
Noa Baum is an award-winning storyteller and educator who performs internationally. Born and raised in Israel, she was an actress at Jerusalem Khan Theater, studied with Uta Hagen in NYC and holds an M.A. from NYU. Noa offers a unique combination of performance art and practical workshops that focus on the power of narrative to heal across the divides of identity, building bridges of understanding and compassion. She lives in Silver Spring and is a member of the National Storytelling Network.