fluffy seed pod

What non-Jews are doing – if I can get it from the letters they are sending me – is that they are simply translating themselves into the particular context of the people I’m writing about. So instead of being a Jew, you are a Baptist; instead of being an Orthodox Jew, you are a Catholic; and the dynamic is the same. The particular words or expressions that might be used might be Jewish or what have you, but they are simply putting themselves in the place of the subculture which is clashing core to core with the umbrella culture in which we all live.

What might we learn from Chaim Potok’s characters, pulled between secular culture and religious tradition?