“Something alarming has been happening lately. I open my social media, and there it is – it has a way of finding its way to my news feed.”
by Mrs. Ada Cunin for Anash.org
There’s a sensitive topic that’s been on my mind for a while. It’s taken me time to share my thoughts, but as Purim approaches, it seems especially relevant and important. Sometimes, things we put in writing don’t come across the way we intend them to; I hope those of you reading this will be able to ‘hear’ the care with which it was written.
Something alarming has been happening lately. The challenge seems to grow each day. I open my social media, and there it is – it has a way of finding its way to my news feed.
We are shluchim and shluchos. Living, breathing extensions of the Rebbe and Rebbetzin. Yes, every single one of us – the Rebbe empowered us to be his emissaries, just by being Chabad!
This is not about individuals, or about judging others. But there’s an issue that has been growing in our community, and it must be said: we need to pay attention to the photos we post for the world to see.
The amazing gift of life’s special moments – upshernishes, bar mitzvahs, weddings, family photo shoots. Shared with family and friends on social media, allowing others to share in our simcha, and sharing in their joy, too. This is a beautiful thing. So why the need for this post?
There has been an uptick in photos that are, simply put, not tznius. Among the beautiful shots of simchas and family vacations, there are often photos of couples standing or behaving in a way that is not suitable for Chabad chassidim. Is this necessary? Why would we post this for the world to see?
The Rebbe spoke about chassanim and kallahs not taking pictures together. I enjoy seeing pictures of engagements, of family and friends at the Ohel for a simcha. I don’t claim to know what the Rebbe would say today, and I’m not coming out to say that the practice should be stopped. My question is more of a general one: where has our sensitivity gone?
We are concerned about yeridas hadoros and the chinuch of our children. I think if we hope to address those issues, we need to go back to some basics.
It seems to have become normalized for couples to take pictures together that are not the most tznius. I see pictures of engaged couples participating in activities that were unheard of just a few short years ago. And when it comes to weddings, I’ve been told that influencer photographers make you SIGN and PAY if you don’t want your children’s pictures all over social media!
Our teenagers think it’s standard for pictures at our weddings to look like they came from a non-Jewish bridal magazine. But this is not about bridal magazines, or photographers, or about if it’s right or wrong for chassanim and kallahs to take pictures together before their wedding. It’s about bringing back the sensitivity that is slowly eradicating itself from our midst.
Many of us enjoy sharing adorable pictures of our families on Purim. It’s a great opportunity to think about the images we capture and share! While we’re at it, maybe we can look through all our photos and delete those we wouldn’t send in to the “Shluchim book”, which was and still is prominently displayed on the Rebbe’s desk. We are the Rebbe’s children, and our pictures are precious.
May our efforts to regain our sensitivity and raise our standards bring the Rebbe much nachas and lead us to the ultimate revelation of geulah with Moshiach, now!