written by Rabbi Aron Moss [Nefesh]
Question of the Week:
My Jewishness is making it harder for me to find love. The more I get involved in Jewish life, the less options I have for girls to date. To be honest, it is making me hesitate before becoming more observant. What should I do, take on more Judaism and limit my options, or keep my options open and put the Jewish thing on hold?
It depends what you are looking for. If you are just after a partner, any partner that suits, then it is a simple numbers game, and the more options in front of you the better chances you have. If you have a wider pool of potential partners, the odds are higher that you will be successful in your search. In this equation, the vaguer you are about yourself, the more potential partners you will find.
But that's only if you are merely looking for a partner. If you are looking for your soulmate it's another story entirely.
Your soulmate is the other half of your soul, the missing part of your very being. You can only recognise your soulmate if you first get to know your own soul. When you know where you are going in life, when you are clear on your own identity, when you know who you really are, then and only then are you equipped to identify the other half of your soul.
Some people have it backwards. They think that when it comes to describing whom you're looking for, you need a long and detailed list of specifications, but when it comes to describing who you are, you are better off being blurry and general. The opposite is true. Know yourself and your own soul. Explore your Jewish identity and become comfortable with it. You are not limiting your options, you are refining your search.