Grace-Full

  Predictably, upon seeing yesterday's Rag Tag Daily Prompt of "Graceful," images of ballerinas, swans, and supple yoga practitioners popped into my mind.  None of these images fit my modus operandi, not today, not ever.  I have managed moments of gracefulness, I am sure, but as a general rule I'm a duck, not a swan. …

What Marks Your Doorposts?

Traditional preparations for Passover are detailed, complex and arduous. "Spring cleaning" doesn't even begin to cover the hours and seriousness with which an observant Jewish homemaker would ensure that the house contains not even a crumb of leavened bread, crackers or even pet food that is not "kosher for Passover." I have to admit that I…

Sprinkle or Dunk?

A few years ago I had a conversation with a good friend about some of the differences among Christian denominations.  Having been raised  a Quaker and now identifying as Jewish, I did not have much understanding of the rituals involved in more traditional Christian worship.  Even though I had attended different church services for weddings…

Grief and Memory in Sacred Ritual

It is no secret that difficult memories can be stumbling blocks preventing us from living full and positive lives and holding us back from becoming our best authentic selves. This became clear to me when I was asked by the Rabbi of my synagogue to share memories of someone I loved during the Yizkor service…

Traveling in the Desert

Sundown tonight begins the holiday of Passover, which celebrates the journey of the Jewish people from a place of bondage through years of wandering in the desert in search of a promised land. We tell this story every year as if we ourselves were on this journey and acknowledge the struggles our ancestors endured as they…