Season of Our Joy

Atlanta Pride Parade 2022 (from top left): MACoM at Pride, Rabbis at Pride, Teachers at Pride, Pride Manicure, SOJOURN float leads the way, Dancing Unicorn poses with Rabbi.   Early Sunday morning: I take the challah dough out of the fridge where it has been rising slowly overnight. I have just enough time to shape … Read more

The Cycle of Return

Last week I posted a teaching about teshuvah, quoting from Yaacov David Shulman’s translation of HaRav Kook’s Lights of Teshuvah. I’d like to add a few more thoughts here, beginning with HaRav Kook’s idea that teshuvah itself existed before the world was created:  התשובה קדמה לעולם “Teshuvah preceded the world.” I’ve been pondering the meaning … Read more

Almost Forty Days

How long does it take to return? That depends… It’s been almost forty days since I set my sights on teshuvah. Even before the first of the month of Elul, when we begin sounding the shofar to awaken us to return, I’ve been preparing for the final shofar blast at the conclusion of Yom Kippur, … Read more

L’shanah Tovah!

Today is the 936th day of March 2020. Today is the 27th day of Elul 5782. I can’t help but notice the discrepancy between the COVID calendar and the Jewish calendar. The former displays a monotonous repetition, each day like the previous one with no productive forward motion. We are stuck in time. Or, perhaps, … Read more

Beauty and Holiness

I’m guest blogging this week for two of my favorite Jewish homes, and I invite you to visit them: On Bayit Builders Blog you’ll find Magnifying Beauty: Tiferet and #ColorTheOmer which contains photographs and video artist statements of my four students’ work, as well as a link to my Artist Statement. Bayit’s Builders Blog is … Read more

Spiritual Coloring Book

What a busy week! After an extended Spring Break, we returned to school on Monday, nine days into the seven weeks between Passover and Shavuot. During this period in the Jewish calendar, some Jews adopt the spiritual practice of Sefirat Ha-Omer, the counting of the days and weeks in anticipation of the upcoming festival.   This … Read more

On the Seventh Day

Passover preparations in our house begin on Rosh Hodesh Nisan and continue non-stop until the moment we begin the first seder. In 2020 and 2021, additional technological preparedness was required—including making sure our family who were quarantined outside of Metro Atlanta were able to join us on Zoom. But this year’s preparation took on a … Read more

Inviting Serah to the Seder

Tonight our family will gather with friends around the dining room table to begin the Passover seder. During the course of the evening, we’ll tell the story of our ancestors’ experience of being redeemed, reading from the haggadah, a book that includes blessings, songs, and stories compiled by rabbis over centuries. This year, we’re adding … Read more