So I’ve been mulling this over for the last few days. I won’t go into all my personal journey here but I do want to just share an idea.
The “Women of the Wall” push the issue of what women don’t have, how we are subjugated and of how we need to have all the physical trappings of men in order to allow us to connect to HaShem. I believe that it is very important to voice the obvious, which for some bizarre reason they seem to have missed.
Judaism doesn’t separate men and women during prayer because women are on a low level, bad or unworthy. The opposite is true. Men are required to pray in the way they are because they are seen to be on a lower spiritual level and in need of those physical trappings and the anchor of set prayer times. It recognizes clearly that women are on a higher level and have no need of this. Therefore we are not commanded to do so.
Girls have their Bat Mitzvah at 12 a year earlier than boys because it recognizes their physical, mental and emotional maturity at an earlier age. Many Reform and Conservative shuls have changed this to allow for gender equality by making the Bat Mitzvah age at 13, just like boys. What a shame. Yet WOW think that they are liberating us by taking us down a few notches and by forcing their lower level on the masses.
I choose W4W because it acknowledges a women’s unique and special role in Judaism and because it recognizes that women exist on a higher level. If we want to bring a feminine twist to the Kotel, let’s be the best Jewish women we can be in the way that only Jewish women can be.