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Morningside Heights


A tender and big-hearted novel about love in the face of loss, from the award-...
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Although Pru is no longer observant, she still practices some of her religion's rites and rituals. Why do you suppose this is? Are there rites or rituals you engage in, religious or otherwise?

Created: 09/23/21

Replies: 15

Posted Sep. 23, 2021 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
davinamw

Join Date: 10/15/10

Posts: 2710

Although Pru is no longer observant, she still practices some of her religion's rites and rituals. Why do you suppose this is? Are there rites or rituals you engage in, religious or otherwise?

Although Pru is no longer observant, she still practices some of her religion's rites and rituals. Why do you suppose this is? Are there rites or rituals you engage in, religious or otherwise? If so, what are they, and what are your reasons for observing them?


Posted Sep. 23, 2021 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
rebajane

Join Date: 04/21/11

Posts: 279

RE: Although Pru is no longer observant,...

I think during extremely difficult times it’s comforting to turn to religion, with its traditions and rituals. It’s a constant and consistent something that doesn’t require much thought, just participation. It’s easy to lose yourself in rites and rituals


Posted Sep. 23, 2021 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
SusanC.

Join Date: 03/25/13

Posts: 46

RE: Although Pru is no longer observant,...

Such a great question! I became a member of a church because my Mother was such an advocate of her religion (I won't say what religion) again this book touched me on so many levels and the religious aspect was very much a part of that. I am not of the Jewish faith but faith is faith. I love that part of Morningside Heights.


Posted Sep. 24, 2021 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
laurap

Join Date: 06/19/12

Posts: 333

RE: Although Pru is no longer observant,...

Religious traditions and practices provide a sense of stability and comfort even when not tied to deep faith.Non-religious family traditions --"the way we always do Christmas" for instance -- can have the same impact particularly in times of distress.


Posted Sep. 24, 2021 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
kimk

Join Date: 10/16/10

Posts: 515

RE: Although Pru is no longer observant,...

Pru was so steeped in religious tradition growing up that its rituals provided comfort to her as an adult.

Although I attended church from childhood until my early 30s, I don't think there are really many religious traditions I stick to. Even Christmas seems to be going by the wayside for me (no kids, and no time to put up decorations). I do still send out handmade Christmas cards each year - a tradition that brings me joy - but no other observances spring to mind, religious or otherwise.


Posted Sep. 24, 2021 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
juliep

Join Date: 04/07/12

Posts: 180

RE: Although Pru is no longer observant,...

When you’re raised with religious rituals and traditions, they become a part of you and your history, whether you acknowledge it or not. I was raised Catholic, Mass every Sunday (sometimes more often), Catholic school, etc. and although I am now “retired” as I like to say, much of it stays with me. And I consider it part of my “life education” and in general am thankful for it. And yes, I agree with those above, that those rituals can be comforting in times of stress or when thinking about your own upbringing.


Posted Sep. 24, 2021 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
paulak

Join Date: 04/21/11

Posts: 209

RE: Although Pru is no longer observant,...

Those religious traditions became part of Pru's DNA which she ignored or downplayed for a time but came to lean on when she needed them. I think this is similar to many rituals on which we are raised, religious or otherwise. We may step away from them for a time but their underpinning is always there and often gives us comfort when all else seems chaos.


Posted Sep. 27, 2021 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
gerrieb

Join Date: 09/03/19

Posts: 124

RE: Although Pru is no longer observant,...

I was surprised on page 238 when Pru said she was an atheist, and didn’t believe in God. I assume all the rituals provided comfort to her and reminded her of a time when her father was still alive and things in her life were more comforting and perhaps less chaotic.


Posted Sep. 27, 2021 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
sheilaa

Join Date: 02/07/20

Posts: 6

RE: Although Pru is no longer observant,...

Rites and rituals are very comforting. Although I don't really believe, I find the opportunity to quietly contemplate and review one's life and actions is a wonderful respite in a busy life


Posted Oct. 01, 2021 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
lorrained

Join Date: 12/04/20

Posts: 50

RE: Although Pru is no longer observant,...

Reliving or performing learned rites and rituals can connect us with our memories of other times. They may be associated with comfort and acceptance and safety or just pleasant memories of other loved ones and friends.


Posted Oct. 01, 2021 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
johnw

Join Date: 03/11/12

Posts: 80

RE: Although Pru is no longer observant,...

Anyone that raised with strong / extreme religious rituals and traditions, these practices and traditions become part of who you are whether they believe in the same faith as an adult. It becomes even stronger pull if you felt positive about the religion, and traditions as a child, these traditions and practices become a source of security and bring a sense of calmness especially in times of turmoil.


Posted Oct. 01, 2021 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
arlenei

Join Date: 08/12/21

Posts: 20

RE: Although Pru is no longer observant,...

Pru practiced her Jewish faith fervently when she was younger.Having faith during turbulent times, even though you are not “active” brings comfort. Maybe for Pru the most meaningful traditions come naturally even though it is part of your past. The ritual of doing brings a sense of calmness in a very hectic life.


Posted Oct. 01, 2021 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
kimk

Join Date: 10/16/10

Posts: 515

RE: Although Pru is no longer observant,...

When I was in seminary (one that prepped ministers for the United Methodist Church), one of my professors, who happened to be Lutheran, was writing a book on the importance of ritual. She spoke about how some Protestant religions have done away with almost all rituals and that wasn't necessarily a good thing. Humans throughout history have relied on them for comfort and to bring them closer to the divine. So even if one doesn't adhere to a specific religion, the rituals associated with that religion can bring a sense of peace, belonging, and rightness. I think that's probably why Pru continued to observe those she found important to her peace of mind.


Posted Oct. 07, 2021 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
audrey1

Join Date: 09/02/13

Posts: 42

RE: Although Pru is no longer observant,...

I am also Jewish . She had moved so completely away from practicing Judaism to fit into with Spence and his rejection and his quest to be seen as totally assimilated. But the more she had to rely on herself the comfort of the rituals of her earlier life began to return and provide a sense of comfort and continuity to her personal identity. It is not unusual. Past rituals can help a person like Pru , who had just fallen away to please a spouse to begin to revisit the past parts of their lives and find the comfort and wholeness that dealing with such a traumatic time . I think she will continue to maintain some touch with her Jewish beliefs. Particularly if she and Walter make a successful relationship.


Posted Oct. 10, 2021 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
AmberH

Join Date: 05/09/18

Posts: 56

RE: Although Pru is no longer observant,...

There is something to be said for nostalgia, tradition, etc. I was raised semi-Catholic and although I don't practice or consider myself a believer, I do enjoy the memories as a child of occasional attendance at mass, going to lunch as a family afterwards, etc. I'm guessing Pru has some of the same feelings here. I even still attend mass with my very Catholic Grandma because it is important to her and feels good to hold on to that routine.


Posted Oct. 15, 2021 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
job

Join Date: 05/12/11

Posts: 19

RE: Although Pru is no longer observant,...

The rituals she keeps probably give her a connection to something good in her past or bring her joy. We all probably continue some rituals from our past that connect us to good memories.


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