Guiding questions: Fat people are often subjected to concern trolling—invasive "concern about our health" even from strangers. We frequently respond either by arguing that size is not a good measure of health or simply wishing that people would mind their own business. But what might it look like if people who purported to care about us actually knew how to be truly caring? How might we actually want to offer and receive care?
In the growing world of Jewish spiritual care, this text from BT (Babylonian Talmud) Berakhot 5b is often used as a model of giving and receiving care.
- What makes Rabbi Yohanan a skilled caregiver?
- Where do you think he or his students might have done better?
- Are there particular issues that those who face concern trolling might address using either positive or negative models from this text?
- What can this text teach us about being in a caring community that acknowledges that all of us can be caregivers and all of us can be cared for?