Google vs. God: What’s causing all these Hasidic Jews to flee their community? Smartphones.
Posted in: Internet Use/New Technologies at 22/08/2012 20:52
Once upon a time -- say, in the 1990s -- a Hasidic Jew looking for escape from her blinkered world might have gone to the library. But by the time F. Vizel, a Satmar Hasid, learned that the public library existed at the age of 20, she'd already made a far more critical discovery. She'd found the Internet.
Vizel, who grew up an hour and a half from New York City, started going online at 19 on her husband's laptop. Within two years, she began exploring blogs by people who had left Hasidism, and had a huge realization: She wasn't the only Hasidic Jew questioning what she now calls a "lifetime of indoctrination and being taught not to think." When she set up an anonymous Facebook account, she posted a painting of Eve in the Garden of Eden as her profile picture, implying that the Internet had become her tree of knowledge.