Few of us have a healthy relationship with chosen-ness. How could we? The notion that we, as individuals, have something special, and that special-ness needs to be shared with the world just doesn’t sit right. Nevertheless, here we are, trying to shape hearts and change minds through our creative endeavors. Even more uncomfortable is the idea of communal chosen-ness, which just so happens to be a major plot point in ancient Jewish literature. Jews, so it goes, are the “chosen people.”
Doing the choosing ourselves can be equally fraught. When we pick one person, one life path, or one creative project over another, we are inevitably closing the door on many others. The ability to make these decisions is a gift and privilege, but also, sometimes a burden. Our capacity to choose is one of greatest powers, leading to deep joy as well as regret and shame.
This year at LABA East Bay we will explore the power of choice from all angles. What does it feel like to choose? What does it feel like to be chosen? And how do we know whether it is our time to do one or the other?
Most importantly, we’ll have a great time talking, eating, drinking, learning, and laughing in the lush, fertile, free-flowing, romantic, super-serious, and endlessly playful environment of LABA East Bay: A Laboratory for Jewish Culture.