One People

Achdus is Hebrish for “unity”.

Indians from India and Shabbas

Well, today was Shabbas and I took a walk in the ‘hood.

We have some new neighbors, lovely folks from India.  Their 17 year-old was outside in the front yard, washing the car on the carport, blasting the car radio.
It really annoyed me.  It was such a quiet, beautiful day.  I was tempted to say something like, “You’re going to find that folks in this neighborhood nap on Saturday afternoon, it’s the Sabbath.  Perhaps could you turn that down?”

But I didn’t.  I walked on.

Two doors down a kid, Caucasian, about 3-4 years old, was standing outside his front door on the porch, bopping his head and sort of hopping from foot to foot.  He was clearly trying to dance to the music.  He smiled at me and I waved.

And I thought, how cool is this, a kid dancing on the porch to the new kid’s radio.

It is, you know.  Totally cool.

Respectfully yours,

zachdus

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June 17, 2007 Posted by | Indian neighbors, shabbas | Leave a comment

Fridays

Maybe this is the really big difference in Jews: Our take on Friday.

The Orthodox don’t all look at Friday as the harbinger of this wonderful, holy day (although most of us love it once we get there). There’s all kinds of stress associated with MAKING SHABBAS.

Most of don’t go, Oh, Wow, Thank G-d for Shabbas! Most of us spend Friday afternoon scurring around still getting dinner together and cleaning house, resenting that the sun is setting and so much hasn’t been done.

And don’t even talk about bloggers. Anything taking us away from our blogging is a problem.

I can’t really speak for any other Jewish denominational group as a group like I can the Orthodox (which is where I’ve come from the past 30 years, you don’t need to know how old I am– old enough). Once the rabbi of our shul gave a speech about being excited about the fact that Shabbas was coming.

He said, “I don’t think most of you really are excited that Shabbas is coming. I think most of you have trouble greeting the day in the special way we’re supposed to greet it, like a person greets a bride. ”

Being relatively new to strict observance, I saw him at kiddish and said, “Actually, I do get a thrill lighting candles.” He looked at me, raised his eyebrows and said. “You do?”

“Uh, huh.”

So that would be a big difference between Jewish denominations, our takes on Fridays and Saturdays. It would be a really hard thing to unite the Jewish people around Shabbas since most Jews aren’t going to decide, one day, “Oh. I think I’ll keep Shabbas. Sounds like an excellent idea, turning off the television, not playing soccer, skipping the restaurant scene.”

Somehow I don’t see that happening right away. But the point of this blog is that we understand one another. We all need to know that in fact it is thrilling for some of us, and less than thrilling for many of us, and it’s not even a concept for most of us.

Which is okay. I hear there’s some pretty good stuff on television on Friday nights, and I’ll bet that’s very relaxing after a hard week, watching a few good shows.

Good Shabbas friends,

zachdus

June 8, 2007 Posted by | fridays, kiddish, preparing for shabbas, shabbas, speeches | Leave a comment