Posts Tagged ‘religion’

Crescendo: Finding my Muse

Monday, July 18th, 2022

“Who you surround yourself with is who you become.” This concept, also known as the law of attraction, goes back at least to Confucius in the 6th century BC. All these centuries later, its wisdom has stood the test of time and often comes to mind when I think about my friends in college, who have become a second family of sorts. In college my friends and I live, eat, study, and relax together, and through these shared experiences I have come to understand how many ways there are to live by one’s own values and give back. 

Growing up under my parents’ roof, my ideas of giving back were based solely on more traditional forms of community support – volunteering at a soup kitchen, taking care of my family members, and giving money to charity. However, as I settled into college life, I began to see just how many forms giving back can take on, and how personal the best forms of giving back can be. Because of the many obligations that make time precious in college, the framework of volunteering that I turned to growing up no longer fit in my life. Instead, I learned how impactful it is to integrate personal passions into activities that align with one’s own values. 

It wasn’t until I got to college that I realized how much my practices surrounding personal values were enforced by my parents. They instilled the value of hard work by encouraging me to practice violin every day, study hard in school, and diligently seek out volunteer opportunities and part-time jobs. Furthermore, I grew up in a Jewish household and spent lots of time going to Hebrew school, services, and the youth group at my synagogue, where I learned about the Jewish principles of repairing the world and helping those around you. 

In a college environment, friendship is more than an outlet for fun – my friends are my support system, and their values make a difference. According to the research of social psychologist Dr. David McClelland of Harvard, the people you associate with determine 95% of your success or failure in life. My friends at college couldn’t care less whether I go to Friday night services or practice violin every day, but they do inspire me through their practices of spreading good in the community and beyond. 

One of my friends is very passionate about composting – just by listening to him talk about reducing personal waste, it is easy to see how deeply he cares about the environment. Over the course of this past school year, his gentle preaching has convinced all of his friends to start composting, including myself. I see the impact of his benevolence whenever I go over to our mutual friends’ houses and see the compost buckets that he personally distributed. He even gave one of our friends a hand-painted bucket covered in smiley faces and flowers. Although people too often forgo cutting down on personal waste because doing so can feel futile, my friend’s impact has been prolific due to his influence on others, and will continue to multiply as I pass on his wisdom by encouraging my own friends to compost.

Another friend of mine is passionate about social justice, and often speaks about her involvement with Students Organizing for Labor Rights, a club advocating for campus workers who are so often treated with negligence by the university. She promotes change by spreading awareness of overlooked local and international social issues on social media, as well as providing information about mutual aid funds. Her welcoming attitude in the face of difficult issues inspires me to get involved, and she often invites groups of friends to attend protests with her. I will never forget the first protest I attended with her, a march remonstrating police violence in Chicago. My friend became a leader of sorts, sharing her knowledge of what to bring and how to act in case of an emergency, as well as leading rally cries at the march. Her eagerness to discuss social issues has encouraged me to become more involved with local social justice issues.

A picture from a protest on police violence that I went to with my friend last year

Living in a time marked by a pandemic, political tumult, and rising levels of adolescent mental health issues, it is not always easy to find the motivation to uphold personal values. Whether I am picking up pieces of trash on the street or attending protests with my friend, upholding personal values comes easy when it also means spending time with friends and watching them thrive in their element. Seeing my friends take action around things that are important to them inspires me to pursue my own passions. My friends have played a key role in encouraging me to pursue my own musical passion, and their support motivates me to continue.  For me, becoming a DJ is not all about my love for music – my main goal as a DJ is to create a space on the dance floor that invites anyone and everyone to express themselves fully. I hope to  create something special for others to experience, and spread joy. And ultimately, by sticking true to my own taste and persona, I hope to encourage others to go after what is important to them too.

Get 15% off at my favorite acai bowl and smoothie spot in NYC

By Lu Poteshman

Lu is a rising senior at Northwestern University, where she studies English Literature with a minor in Art, Theory and Practice. She is passionate about all things music and art, and loves to paint, draw, design things, write creatively, cook and explore in her free time. She is currently working towards her dreams of being a book editor by day and DJ by night.

For over 20 years, the Campus Clipper has been offering awesome student discounts in NYC,  from the East Side to Greenwich Village. Along with inspiration, the company offers students a special coupon booklet and the Official Student Guide, which encourages them to discover new places in the city and save money on food, clothing, and services.  

At the Campus Clipper, not only do we help our interns learn new skills, make money, and create wonderful e-books, we give them a platform to teach others. Check our website for more student savings and watch our YouTube video showing off some of New York City’s finest students during the Welcome Week of 2015.


Wine, Tradition & Conversation

Monday, August 2nd, 2021

Wine plays an important role in my life, and I’m not alone. For thousands of years it’s been a central part of religious ceremonies: Catholic communions, Passover Seders, ancient rituals to Dionysus. As someone who studies religion and cares deeply about food, wine means a lot of things to me. A glass paired with a home cooked meal is a lovely treat to myself and friends, it makes a good housewarming gift, it goes well with late night reading, and it can tell us a lot about the place it comes from: the land that grew the grapes, the religion of the makers, the culinary traditions of its homeland. But what I love most about wine is that it can bring people together and create lively debates, conversations, and connections. Living, eating, and cooking around the world has taught me a lot about what wine can and should do for us.

From a wine festival at Sacré Cœur in Paris. We celebrated with wine, cheese, live music, and art!

In the French tradition of the salon, drinking is combined with intellectual debate. Thinkers, writers, and artists gather at a cafe and discuss: what do we value? What should we value? What are we reading, what art is in fashion, how might we make our world more just? What does it mean to be just? In my world, I’m inspired to bring this inquisitive spirit into book clubs, dinner parties, and study groups. I pour everyone a glass of deep red wine and we start talking. Ask at least as many questions as you answer. Put out a charcuterie plate or a baked wheel of brie, and let the ideas-and wine-flow.

Discussing our favorite reads: Dani is telling us about The Romance of American Communism

In Israel I learned about how important wine is in the Jewish tradition. On each holiday my professors would teach us about what we were celebrating, accompanied often by a history lesson and related treat: apples and honey on Rosh Hashanah, challah on Shabbat, latkes around Hanukkah. The Hebrew word for the blessing of wine is Kiddush, whose root means holy or sacred. In your own life try connecting to your religious or cultural heritage. Do you or your family pair wine with certain foods or ideas? Or, ask your Jewish friends if they celebrate Shabbat and-if you’re lucky-maybe you’ll get to celebrate with them. Enjoy a little kosher wine and learn about what makes wine so important in Judaism. Share your oenological practices. Ask yourself why wine is or isn’t important to you, and in what context.

A little Shabbat charcuterie with a friend from Tel Aviv at Amelie Wine Bar near campus

In my personal tradition wine is best paired with a cozy night spent reading or talking with friends. There’s nothing I love more than spending time with people I love over a bottle of wine, catching up and discussing and laughing. I’ve learned a lot about wine and what it can do from living around the world, and in my home I try to incorporate my favorite parts of different traditions. We celebrate Shabbat with a good glass of wine, gather to discuss around a bottle, and share recipes and pairings with people we love. Try incorporating nice wine into your culinary, intellectual, and religious/cultural traditions.

From a poetry reading in the park on my friend’s birthday. Celebrating her with wine, literature, candles, and cupcakes.

Please drink legally and safely. If you don’t know your limit, drink in little bits with people you trust. Wine should be something you intake in moderation, and it’s safest when we approach it with goals of cultural learning and understanding rather than to get drunk. Stay safe, stay smart, and enjoy your wine!

Cora Enterline is a senior at NYU studying law, ethics, and religion. She’s studied and worked in Paris and Tel Aviv, where she loved biking, traveling, dancing, and teaching English. She has a love for foreign languages, sad novels, themed dinner parties, and red wine by candlelight. This summer, follow her blog to learn easy, student-friendly recipes and find inspiration from around the world for your own dinners, picnics, and culinary adventures at home!

For over 20 years, the Campus Clipper has been offering awesome student discounts in NYC,  from the East Side to Greenwich Village. Along with inspiration, the company offers students a special coupon booklet and the Official Student Guide, which encourages them to discover new places in the city and save money on food, clothing, and services.  At the Campus Clipper, not only do we help our interns learn new skills, make money, and create wonderful e-books, we give them a platform to teach others. Check our website for more student savings and watch our YouTube video showing off some of New York City’s finest students during the Welcome Week of 2015.


Spiritual Devotion and College

Wednesday, June 19th, 2013

    In addition to cultivating skills that are indispensable in the job market, a college-level education is frequently associated with long-term individual benefits. The ability to interpret and engage issues from a wider breadth of perspectives, and the cultivation of critical reasoning skills – as advocates of higher education will point out – leads to a more reflective lifestyle, and allows graduates to engage literary and artistic works in ways that are more meaningful and enriching. Higher level education is also lauded for its capacity to produce citizens that are inquisitive, as well as receptive towards other viewpoints.

    Being exposed to different cultural practices and unfamiliar political views – as students within each generation have testified – frequently cause former systems of belief to appear less rigid, and more susceptible to reassessment. It has often been pointed out that a sense of commitment towards familial and communal ideals – particularly those of a religious or spiritual orientation – may appear increasingly tenuous as one begins to explore unfamiliar ideas, diverse organizations, and novel friend circles.

     As recent studies prove however, entry into a higher level institution and the disintegration of religious belief fails to evoke a clear, correlative pattern. According to one study, universities have reported that at least a third of their respective student bodies participate in regular spiritual activities. Students within several universities have also expressed a shared desire to enlist religious speakers to speak at campus-wide events.

    This phenomenon is restricted not only to educational institutions within the Midwest, but is increasingly pervasive in cosmopolitan regions as well. Towards the conclusion of 2012, New York University completed construction on the Center for Spiritual Life, partly as a response to the proliferation of spiritual activity within the university. The CSL arranges non-exclusive programs and meetings that center on exploring spiritual sentiments, as well as facilitating intercommunication between students of different faiths. The Center is also responsible for housing religious figures, including a Protestant Reverend, a Catholic Priest, a rabbi, and an imam.

    For next week’s blogpost, I will interview the founders of three separate religious organizations in NYU: the Youth Evangelical Fellowship, the Islamic Student Association, and Hillel: The Jewish Culture Foundation at NYU. In doing so, I shall inquire into the histories of these three organizations, their programs and activities, and whether promoting interaction between different organizations constitutes a priority for each of these three groups. I will also interview the founding members in order to determine whether living in a fast-paced urban environment, and attending a secularized university poses a constant challenge to the consolidation, and furthering of personal devotion.



Pietro Crotti, New York University. Check out my Twitter!

Follow the Campus Clipper on Twitter and Like us on Facebook!

Interested in more deals for students? Sign up for our bi-weekly newsletter to get the latest in student discounts and promotions  and follow our Tumblrand Pinterest. For savings on-the-go, download our printable coupon e-book!


The Melody Of Unexpected Rhythm

Friday, July 2nd, 2010

written by Angela M

Illustration By Tao Zao

I grew up on Disney and nightly walks with my Russian grandparents, sunflower seeds sticking to my fingers, old lady tales dripping from my ears like borscht. I was never told not to smile at a cute Asian boy, or to repress a casual wink at a dashing Spaniard.

Maybe I was never told to not do these things because: 1) I don’t smile often, and 2) I can barely wink. Regardless, there was never any objection to multicultural friendships. Romantically speaking, though, it was never really spoken about, perhaps because it was never really expected.
My first legitimate ounce of interest in the opposite sex could have something to do with my current situation.
I was in the first grade, and his name was Timothy. He was everything I wanted in a boy. He never spoke to me; he rarely, if ever, held the staircase door open for me; and he cheated on me. I don’t know whether it counts as cheating if we were never in a relationship, but my heart was temporarily in shambles. Did I mention that Timothy was Asian? Did I also mention that I’m white and Jewish and from Brooklyn?
At 22, and not a bit less romantic than my first grade self, I find my heart taken once again (this time, in a less make-believe type of way). I am in love with a writer who just so happens to be outside of my race. Raised Muslim but not practicing, my Indian love connects himself with the folk of Jackson Heights, Queens before anything else. To sum things up, not only am I dating a fellow who’s a hundred beautiful shades darker than my pastey self, but I am also dating someone outside of my borough.
We met at a house party. His band was playing, and I later on learned that he had asked our mutual friend to invite me, since he was too shy to do it himself. The night felt like something taken out of one of those typical teenage movies where the girl seems to be playing coy, not realizing what’s going on, and the guy is fumbling over every other word, crossing his fingers that he doesn’t look as dumb as he feels. It took me half the party to realize that I was falling heavy over someone who I had never expected to come across.
Surprisingly, my mother was more accepting of my new found love than some of my friends. When I say some, I really just mean one. My Jewish friend Rebecca* was stunned to realize that I was romantically involved with someone so far from my religion. I kept it secret from her for as long as I could, afraid of the very reaction that I got. She started telling me that being a Jew meant that I was part of the chosen ones, and how keeping religion alive in my family was imperative. Basically, she made me feel like the black sheep of the herd. A day after her attack, she apologized wholeheartedly and told me that I have her full support in any decision that I make in life. (I can only imagine how Rebecca’s reaction would have been if I had confessed that I was getting married!) Just to be clear, I consider myself Jewish more in terms of culture than practice. Echoing Keats, “Love is my religion.”
In a city where love has an astigmatism and hearts beat to their own bongo, interracial coupling is more common than ever. Every way my head turns, I see it: hands of different colors holding on to each other. It’s beautiful, really. And now, I am part of it. We grew up hearing different languages being spoken at home, eating foods synonymous to our cultures, but we were also scolded by our parents for leaving cookie crumbs in our beds, and watching too many T.V. shows instead of doing our homework. Plenty of people in college date people who they didn’t expect to be with. We aren’t really all that different, though. We both love literature and writing, we listen to the same type of music, and, obviously, we both enjoy a good house party.

*Name changed to protect privacy.

Find out more about Academic Discounts!

Download our NEW App on iTunes!
Become a fan on Facebook and follow us on twitter!