I just read a scholarly article on the Jewish denominational movements in the US. While the article was trying to point out that the borders and strictures of denominationalism are (in the author’s rather odd opinion, IMHO) preventing the flexibility needed for modern accomodation, she mentions that Jewish orthodoxy’s maintaining of strong religious standards is counter-cultural.
While this makes sense, as modern society has become one of do your own thing regardless of historical or cultural boundaries, it puts chassidim (and Jewish orthodoxy in general) together with past counter-cultural movements such as the hippies and vegans.
Be hip, be cool, be strictly religiously Jewish. Consider it your way of rebelling!
Suddenly my black hat, long black coat and grey beard are cool and rebellious. Nice!