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New to Lina and the whole "conversion" thing...


wildflower

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I've just started reading Lina's blog and I'm kind of confused. I'm assuming that she's Messianic so what's the point of going through the Orthodox conversion process that she claims she and her husband are going through? From my understanding, I would think that there is probably at least one or two Messianic synagogues in a city as big as Austin (that's where she's from, right?) Why go through all the work of an Orthodox conversion when she could just go to a Messianic synagogue? For that matter, why are other Messianics trying to go through the conversion process? They can't seriously think that they can win converts by misleading a Rabbi, can they? Can someone give me a Cliff Notes version of the crazy please?

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I know a 20-page thread is mighty intimidating, but I strongly encourage you to read through the "Lina's Back" post. It's got some excellent insight and provides the whole story!

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Guest Anonymous

Once upon a time there lived a teenaged girl named Paulina. Her parents were hardworking mainstream Christians who valued education and tried to give their daughters many opportunities and good things. Paulina often seemed very anxious, and she didn't enjoy going to school. She thought about being a doctor, and her parents were very happy.

Paulina graduated high school and spent a lot of time on the internet reading blogs about fundamentalist evangelical Christianity. Something about it really appealed to her - perhaps it was the structure, the rules, or the safety it promised. Lina went down the rabbit hole. She decided that she would be a stay at home daughter and live under the protection of her father. Lina's parents were not on board with this and they told her she needed to attend some sort of classes or do something towards a secondary education, rather than spending all of her time knitting, trying on scarves, and pining for a fundie prince to come and carry her away. She pretended to obey her parents, but she actually did what she wanted when she wanted and seemed to act ungrateful and disrespectful when she disagreed with them.

Lina took online classes and decided to study herbalism. She became a vegan, dressed modestly, and treated a wound with garlic paste, which didn't turn out as well as she'd hoped. She began to flirt with Messianic Christianity, and a guy messaged her on facebook. Something about the guy startled Lina away (His animal magnetism? His overbearing personality? His posters of Osama Bin Laden with hearts drawn on? We'll probably never know.) and she closed her facebook and began a new one under another name.

Lina did a lot of things that she thought were Jewish traditions, and acted snotty when people told her she was mistaken about meanings or was doing something wrong. She riddled her blog with misspelled Hebrew phrases and bitched at her family for not observing Jewish holidays. Lina quit veganism and moved on to trying to keep (her typically weird idea of) kosher.

The guy who had initially contacted Lina on facebook tracked her down again -this time with marriage, courtship, and total domination on his mind. Lina was, for some reason, flattered by this instead of utterly creeped out. She asked her parents for permission to court A.J., and presumably they gave it. A.J. lived far away but they chatted on facebook and the phone. At last A.J. visited and Lina was thrilled. They held hands and caressed one another and went to Olive Garden. Soon they were engaged and A.J. had moved in order to be close to Lina. He got a job and an apartment and Lina washed his dirty underthings and cooked him meals in her parents' kitchen.

A.J. discovered the old Free Jinger board after he made his infamous comment:

Allow me to offer my perspective about your whole Taliban statement: IF you want your husband to begin acting as though he were a Taliban Soldier enforcing Sharia Law... then disrespect him, and so will your outcome be.

However, IF you want to live your life with a peaceful man that treasures you and Loves you with all of his might... then submit and follow him, and so will your outcome be.

This earned him the nickname Taliban Tony, (thank you Burris!) and he spent a small amount of time on Free Jinger yelling about how ashamed he was that women and mothers are allowed to use the internet, calling us "a brood of vipers," and threatening us with legal action for stating opinions.

Lina made her blog private and e-mailed this statement to Free Jinger:

I will never open up my blog again, so don't delude yourselves.

My parents and my soon-to-be husband are appalled at such ridiculous behaviour coming from grown adults. We are still in shock over the accusations hurled at us, people you don't know and who have done nothing at all to you. If you think you are doing any good by contacting other family members and spreading lies all over your forum for people to read, don't kid yourselves. What you have done is dangerous and shocking. I feel for the more sensitive people you have hurt with your forum. Suicides are committed by the hateful things written carelessly over the internet.

Until Free Jinger and other hate groups like it are shut down, my blog will continue to be shut down to outsiders as well.

This happened at the end of May, and Lina lasted a few months without the constant adoration of the internet hordes before ... she opened the blog back up to outsiders.

When she returned she had scrubbed a lot of Jesus off of her blog and she and Taliban Tony were claiming to practice Orthodox Judaism. The Jewish people of Free Jinger *headdesked* and an epic thread was born. Lina and Tony went without touching for two whole weeks before Lina immersed in a mikvah of her own making and they scampered off to the court house for a chuppa-less but chutzpah-filled wedding.

Now the pair of them are living in wedded bliss, more Jewish than any actually Jewish people could hope to be, and pursuing a conversion of indeterminate origin. Are they planning to lie in order to convert? Lina says they know lots of people who have, so many Free Jingerites think that they are. Lina and Tony refuse to see why everyone doesn't immediately accept everything they do as perfect. Tony continues to be a red flag factory and Lina continues to be snotty. Together they continue to be the most special snowflakes that ever were special, in their own minds, at least.

And that's the Cliff Notes version of the crazy - 95% typed from memory without checking dates, references, etc. so I know some of it is out of order. I think I hit the highlights, though.

*Edited because for some reason I typed "beginning" when I should have typed "end."

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Guest Anonymous

Thanks Beeks, bea, and punkiepie! :)

Wonderful, Lissar! Wasn't there a raw food phase, too, or am I making that up?

Thanks Flora, and I believe you're right about the raw food.

Yep! Found it - asetapartlife.blogspot.com/2010/04/raw-story.html

Money quotes:

One day, something inside me just sort of clicked. I realized why I felt so far away from Yah. By replacing Him with all my various diets, my beloved yoga, and my preoccupation with vanity, I was creating idols. So of course I felt empty and frustrated deep inside!

Saying I loved Yahweh wasn't enough. I had to prove it with my life.

But whoever guards His Word, truly the love of Elohim has been perfected in him. By this we know that we are in Him. ~1 John 2:14

The passion I had for the raw vegan lifestyle had to be replaced with a passion for my Creator, who created the fruits and the plants I loved so much.

After being a devoted and outspoken vegan for more than three years, I stopped. It was something I needed to do. I needed to rid my life of all its distractions to focus entirely on Elohim {G-d}...

After discovering Yah's Torah - His instructions for living - I became inspired to take better care of my temple {body}. I've gone all natural - yes - think hippy ;) No makeup, no perfume, no lotion...and no deoderant! I have replaced the only products I do use (i.e. shampoo, soap) with natural alternatives. And, in keeping with the command found in Deuteronomy 22:11, I only wear clothing made with 100% material, rather than a mixture. I've come to find out that YHWH hates mixtures. ...

If you're interested, here is what I eat on a typical day:

Breakfast: Green Smoothie (2 cups water, 2-3 bananas, 2-3 kale leaves, dates)

Lunch: Huge green salad (1 head romaine lettuce, cherry tomatoes, 1 avocado, 1-2 mangoes, cucumbers, etc.)

Snack: fruit or nuts

Dinner: Plate of fruit or another Green Smoothie

Because of Chag HaMatzot, I've been eating a sheet of matzah every night while I read the Word. But apart from the matzah, everything else has been raw and unleavened.

God hates mixtures, people. Brb, got to throw out my trail mix and my multi-grain cereal.

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Awesome storytelling, Lissar!

Ahahaha, oh Lina.

Also during that raw food phase her beliefs were so much more stereotypically messianic than they are now.

I think somebody on the old FJ predicted that in five years Lina will be Muslim (or at least "Muslim"). That's probably a good bet. Her beliefs change so fast.

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Guest Anonymous
Lissar are you a professional writer? If not you should be!

Excellent post.

Thanks so much browngrl! I do write and sometimes people pay me. (Not very much.) If it comes through I hope to have a regular paid (but not very much) gig starting in January.

Thank you pomology. You're all making me do this :oops: .

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Thank you Lissar, I needed the belly laugh.

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I don't get the impression that others do that Lina's parents are so mainstream. They sent her to a Christian school before the public high school, and some of her early (before she became Messianic) posts made it sound like she was trying to get back toward the religious practice she experienced at that school. Also, she's written that her parents screened guys who wanted to court her and implied that they said "no" to some guys before they said "yes" to TT. She also has at least one aunt who is into the whole Messianic thing too--so that is something in her family not something she found herself on the Internet--although she obviously did a lot of research herself on different blogs and ran with the idea.

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Lissar, that was fabulous!!!! Thank you!

Agree! That was amazing, Lissar! I wasn't around for the first part, so all I can say is... wow.

Oh, and yeah, I also hate clothing that is not made of material. :roll:

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Once upon a time there lived a teenaged girl named Paulina. Her parents were hardworking mainstream Christians who valued education and tried to give their daughters many opportunities and good things. Paulina often seemed very anxious, and she didn't enjoy going to school. She thought about being a doctor, and her parents were very happy.

Thank you SO much for the awesome summary! Have a virtual beer on me. :beer: :obscene-drinkingcheers:

The crazy...it is scary and sad too since she's throwing away so many opportunities.

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Oh wow, somehow I had completely forgotten that TT found her, lost her, and then managed to track her down on a different account. That is super-duper creepy. This won't end well.

Anyway, I suspect that she really does intend to convert to Orthodox Judaism so she can attempt to convert others the Messianic Judiasm from the inside. She's just arrogant enough to believe that she can do it. But this is probably a phase just like the rest of her phases and hopefully she'll jump onto something different before some poor rabbi has to deal with her.

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When she returned she had scrubbed a lot of Jesus off of her blog and she and Taliban Tony were claiming to practice Orthodox Judaism. The Jewish people of Free Jinger *headdesked* and an epic thread was born.

Heh. So true. That's an excellent summary.

I was actually discussing Lina's story with someone at synagogue yesterday. Her reaction was also along the lines of: :angry-banghead: She had many of the same questions we ask here: how does this make sense? Why does she want to convert? Why are these people so loopy? Nice to be reassured that it's not just us thinking these things.

I had also forgotten that TT actually found her once and creeped her out so much that she shut down her Facebook account before tracking her down again. What a gigantic red flag. Ugh. I agree, this is likely to end very badly.

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Guest Anonymous

God hates mixtures, but is fine with a big old mixed green salad, in which she combines fruit and vegetables. And it's okay to use a blender to whip up a smoothie, because it's not technically mixing, it's blending.

I actually really appreciate this Cliffnotes version, thanks Lissar. I was getting a bit lost on the other thread, mostly because I'm completely ignorant of the jewish language. This helps muchly :)

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OK, I bow to the awesomeness that is Lissar. I was wrong! :-D

And I agree with longskirts -- I don't think her family was "that mainstream". They seem fundie-lite to me. I think a large part (maybe even the main reason) she can't give up "Yeshua" is that her entirely family would freak because that would mean she is going to hell. I live about 2 hours from Lina, and I have a couple good friends from colleges whose parents encouraged them to have careers, but at the same time were very, very hardline about Jesus, no kissing beyond a peck on the cheek before marriage, church twice a week, family prayers, etc. Both of my friends were married by age 22, and both of them had very short dating periods (6 months at the higher end). I think Lina came from a family like this. But I guess it depends on your ideas of "mainstream" and "fundie lite". I tend to call "fundie lite" anyone who honestly believes I am going to burn in hell because I don't call God by the exact same name they do.

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Yeah, admittedly, the Hebrew/Yiddish terminology can be confusing. I try to explain what I mean at least for the initial use of a word, but sometimes I forget. And sometimes you really have to use the Hebrew, because even if there's a corresponding word in English, to the average Christian, it can have really different connotations than it does in a Jewish context. In other cases, there's really no good translation.

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Lissar, that was fabulous!!!! Thank you!
I'm only seconding this. Great writeup - I hadn't followed it before, but now... lolwut? (...to Taliban Tony and Lina, that is.)
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(my friend) had many of the same questions we ask here: how does this make sense? Why does she want to convert? Why are these people so loopy? Nice to be reassured that it's not just us thinking these things.

That's exactly what makes it so lulzy but sad at the same time though. It's a group of people who say they're proud to be Y, a flavor of X, but they know in their deepest darkest secret heart that they confront at 2 AM when they can't sleep that normal members of X are not gonna accept them. And they supposedly don't care about that, because Y is better, but... deep down, at 2 AM, they do care. They care DEEPLY.

They care enough to try and become normal full members of X, hiding the fact that really they're Y.

If Messanic people were truly confident in their own tradition they would not care what the Jewish community thinks. But... they do. Oh YES, they do.

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Now the pair of them are living in wedded bliss, more Jewish than any actually Jewish people could hope to be, and pursuing a conversion of indeterminate origin. Are they planning to lie in order to convert? Lina says they know lots of people who have, so many Free Jingerites think that they are.

I wrote earlier that Beit Shalom might sponsor conversions -- conversions that would have no value outside Beit Shalom. If so, then Lina's probably referring to people she knows there.

(And nice summary, Lissar!)

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