Sacred time is share-ware. It's free. The only condition is you have to use it before you go, there's no refund at the finish line. Once normal to civilizations, the observance of holy days has become a radical spiritual act of care for yourself, your family and community. The relevance, meaning and beauty of Shabbat and Jewish holy days is provided here in many free articles for you. Before you move to a new page, please consider this:
Are you willing to say to employers, schools, partners and politicians: “Today is set aside as holy, not to be diluted away by overdoses of work, money matters, politics, homework, telephone solicitations, television commercials. This time is my birthright. You can't have it!"
And what if they say: "Take ownership of your own time?! You can't have it! We must use your life to feed our bottom lines!"
Can you imagine yourself joining in leading the spiritual (r)evolution with a response that might sound something like this:
"Oh, no, I won't give all my precious time to you. We Jews build beautiful meaning-making experiences in time,we savor festival meals, engage in soul refining rituals, in order to live consciously, we take time to reflect and refine how we act, how we live, how we love and how we work.
"I am writing the Torah of my life with each fixed day. I want to ripen deliciously in the sun of life, not race whipped to the finish line. I have every right to experience these Jewish holidays in their deepest intentions: nurturing my relationships, celebrating the journey, rejoicing in and respecting the power and diversity of Creation."
And if they say: "No reason to think, no need to reflect. Feel your feelings?! You look up at the stars and express the awe you feel? You stop to question the ethics of your own actions?!
"You say you're not coming in tomorrow so you can sit with your children or friends in a sukkah and meditate on the fragility of life, the beauty of nature! You're late because you stopped to say a memorial prayer for your parents?
"Listen, the work ethic is your spiritual model! Our company is your family. What's all this about freedom and Jews?"
And you'll say?................
Life can be very lonely without powerful life cycle rituals which gather your inner circle of friends and family during times of celebration, separation, maturation and mourning.
In this section of ReclaimingJudaism.org you will find teachings and resources concerning:
Birth & Loss: Discover Jewish rituals and prayers for making love, conception, Jewish baby naming, miscarriage, adoption and infertility rituals.
Marriage & Divorce: Spiritual preparation for a Jewish wedding, ritual immersion made meaningful, approaches to family understanding and forgiveness, management of interfaith family issues, Jewish same sex weddings, understanding the Jewish divorce process, the importance of a "get", adding spirituality to the Jewish divorce process. Special section for couples on how to attain and sustain spiritual intimacy.
Bar Mitzvah & Bat Mitzvah: Thirteen sacred shifts possible to transform youth or adult bar/bat mitzvah into a healthy, meaningful and memorable rite of passage. How to write a remarkable d'var Torah (Torah teaching). Reclaiming and transmitting Jewish culture for your party and the sake of the Jewish future and it's great fun too.
Changes in Lifestyle, Body & Health: Discover Jewish healing practices and healthy rites for transitions such puberty and menopause, retirement, grand parenting, dealing with aging parents, etc.
Dying, Death, Funeral & Mourning: A complete traditional guide to the Jewish process for death and dying taught through the lens of the relevance, meaning, timing and implications of each practice.
Party-Planning: Our Greening Your Party Guide: simple, effective, ethical.
Mitzvah is the primary Jewish lens for living.
Mitzvah study and practice help us develop as individuals and as a people. Each mitzvah constitutes a category of Jewish spiritual practice that provides us ways of texturing our lives with meaningful actions ethical and life-shaping ritual actions.
If we are honest and modest, we are probably not even aware that a lot of mitzvot lie latent within us, still in a potential state. That’s why mitzvah mentoring is at the heart of this website's intent. We are all just as Jewish tradition describes us—as full of mitzvot as a pomegranate is full of seeds.
The practice and relevance of mitzvah goes far beyond “being a good person,” and beyond its dictionary definition of “commandment,” and even beyond how a given mitzvah is detailed in halachah, Jewish law.
This section teaches about the many mitzvot assei, actions in which to engage to create a better world and a meaningful Jewish life, and the many mitzvot lo taasei, actions from which to refrain, with the same holy intent.
Mitzvot are how holiness happens, every day, in an engaged Jewish life.
Much more than a collection of Bible stories,Torah is the Jewish term for the Five Books of Moses. Torah, Talmud, traditional and contemporary commentaries are rivers of wisdom and change. In this section, we will show you many ways to find meaning for yourself through engaging with Jewish sacred text. Before leaving this page, please consider:
Do you believe the entire Torah was given by God in one experience at Mt. Sinai?
Or are you certain that the Torah is a set of myths and wisdom collected and compiled over time?
Notice what you feel and realize from reading the text. What comes up for you is your revelation, the torah of your life. Share it. Torah sharing can be a great source of intimacy and meaning.
The Bible and all of our sacred texts tend to present us with stories of dysfunctional family relationships. Often the most perplexing questions and difficult situations are posed in the Talmud and the many other profound Jewish sources. By confronting us with parallels to our own actions the complexity of issues and outcomes is better revealed in order to help us to evolve into our highest selves.
Torah and sacred study gives life meaning and direction when your life wisdom and your questions pass through the prism of sacred text, preferably during study time with a close friend or teacher. Jewish prayer and mystical texts provide nutrients for the soul stream so that we can transcend the stress of everyday living, when you know how to understand and apply their metaphors and practices.
Welcome to ReclaimingJudaism.org; Distill Wisdom from Torah and Prayer
We provide life-cycle ritual support world-wide that is customized to your circumstances for Jewish weddings, b'nei mitzvah, baby namings, mid-life rituals, funerals and memorial services.
All of our work is fully inclusive of the full range of gender and Jewish affiliation. This service is for those who live where appropriate support is not available.
Reclaiming Judaism is a non-profit and fees for ritual services are on a sliding scale to ensure all can have access to Jewish ritual. Transportation and lodging are not subsidized and it is the responsibility of those receiving our services to provide both. Our emphasis is on spiritually meaningful rituals, grounded in Jewish tradition, that support the health and happiness of Jewish individuals and families. Inquiries.
edited by Goldie Milgram and Ellen Frankel with Peninnah Schram, Cherie Karo Schwartz and Arthur Strimling plus 60 contributing authors.
Sixty inspiring and provocative ...