Just after I started my blog, a friend whom I met through the Mission Minyan – my Rabbanite congregation of choice these days – told me that my blog was too serious. He thought I needed more satire and shtick. I told him that I pray for the day that there are enough Karaite blogs that one of them can focus on “satire and shtick.”
That day may not be far. And it might already be here.
Late last year, a Karaite leaning woman started a Tumblr called FrumKaraite seeking to spread Karaite Judaism through memes. FrumKaraite is a play on the Yiddish term frumkeit (loosley translated as “religiosity”). FrumKaraite provides new ways of looking at old Karaite concepts.
And this year, Isaac Kight, who practiced Rabbinical Judaism for years before formally adopting Karaite Judaism in 2009, became an official blogger on the Times of Israel’s site. His focus is Israeli politics, a true passion of his, but he recently wrote a piece for the Times regarding how Karaite Judaism adds diversity to the Jewish people.
Also in 2014, a formerly Orthodox Jewish man started Only Torah – A Karaite Revival, which is a no-holds-barred, take-it-to-them site challenging Rabbinic notions of Judaism. The site does something I try mightily to avoid here – namely, that site engages in polemics. But I must give credit where credit due; even though some of his articles are a bit irreverent for my taste, he has inspired me to start blogging again – and to step up my frequency.
And of course, there’s the longstanding Okie Hebrew site by Ken Lane, who explains his site is Where Oklahoma Sensibilities and Karaite Judaism Overlap. Ken is in the process of completing his conversion to Judaism through the Modern Orthodox movement. The Bet Din overseeing Ken’s conversion is well-aware of his Karaite tendencies. In fact, Ken took the Hebrew name “Yefet” in large part due to the Karaite Sage, Yefet ben Eli. And Ken also recently put together the KaraiteJewishProblems Tumblr with some rather clever animated images.
I don’t pretend to agree with the opinions and approaches of every Kariate or Karaite-type individual out there; but I am thrilled that they exist – and I’m even more thrilled that some of them have put their views online. I hope they keep their sites active.
Although I work to make A Blue Thread a premier destination for persons interested in Karaite Judaism – I have never wanted it to be the only such destination.