Identity/Community by Eliana Light
Identity/Community by Eliana Light
Tags: Eliana Light 
grades:  Middle School (6-8) , Adult 

For The Educator, a note from the songwriter:

Though this song contains no Hebrew, the tension it presents is a part of our history and our present. Although personal prayer is acceptable, a minyan, a quorum of ten, is required to say certain prayers like the mourner’s kaddish. Hillel is quoted in Pirkei Avot as saying, “do not separate yourself from the community (2:5).” But he also says in that same book, “if I am not for myself, who will be for me? (1:14).” It’s clear from trends in Jewish life that this tension is still with us. If we remain completely steadfast in our own beliefs and practices, will we end up “doing Judaism” alone? If we find others to do it with, will we need to compromise who we are as individuals?
Consider and discuss:
-Where do you feel the most at home in the Jewish world?
-Where do you feel the most alienated?
-How do you strike a balance between your own identity and community?

This journey I’ve been on
has led me down so many roads
that I don’t know which way to go
cause I get so turned around
I’m just trying to figure out
How to be most like myself,
cause there’s no “me” anymore
so I just keep looking down
There’s got to be a place out there for me
Where I won’t have to compromise the person I can be:

Who I am, Who I was, Who I will be
All I want is to sing my own song
Where I am, Where I was, Where I’m going,
All I want is somewhere to belong,
Somewhere to belong

The past was once a rock,
something solid in my step
and it kept me on the way
that I knew would lead me right
But words I can’t believe
shoot my certainty with holes
And the questions fill my soul
and it makes me want to fight
but somehow I am drawn back to the things I knew
Can I believe myself and still believe in You?


If we are all unique,
how can we come together?
If we don’t share a name,
than what can we become?
Can I just shine my light,
or can I help your light shine brighter?
Can I search alongside you, take the journey with you?

Who we are, Who we were, Who we will be
All we want is to sing our own song
Where we are, Where we were, Where we’re going,
All we want is somewhere to belong,
Oh, all I want is somewhere to belong
Somewhere to belong