Someone Else's Traditions
Following the advice of Rabbi Brody, I have made some changes in my daily lerning schedule. I stopped lerning Tanya and began lerning Likutey Etzos. Once I finish Rambam's Mishneh Torah I will also start lerning Mishnah Berurah. In the mean time, I am supplementing Rambam with some Kitzur Shulchan Aruch.
These changes are in addition to my daily schedule of lerning Chumash with Rashi, Gemara, Tehillim, and Degel Machaneh Ephraim.
I came to the realization that over the years I had adopted many Chabad minhagim by mere osmosis - minhagim down to how I put on tefillin. I adopted these in the absence of minhagim taught to me by my parents. Lately, I realized that my adopted Chabad minhagim just didn't fit anymore. My heritage is from a tiny shtetl in Ukraine, not from White Russia, not from the shtetl of Lubavitch.
I am not writing this to denigrate the minhagim of Chabad. If a person comes from a Lubavitch family, these minhagim are indeed his heritage and what he should proudly follow. I am writing with the recent realization that these are, however, someone else's traditions.
Genealogy and Yiddishkeit go together hand in hand. For this reason I have stopped lerning Tanya and putting on tefillin according to the Chabad minhag. Doing otherwise would be intellectually dishonest.
Be careful to perpetuate the custom of your fathers that is in your hands.
(Talmud - Beitza 4b)