One of my first posts on feminismandreligion.com was about ways to re-soul on Shabbat. Since I haven’t yet revisited any topic in the years I’ve been writing for this blog, I thought now is the perfect time and Shabbat is the perfect subject matter. Why is now the perfect time? Why is Shabbat the perfect subject matter? These two questions share the same answer. I’ve been grappling with discovering a meaningful observance in the midst of my new teaching endeavors.
I teach, study and read about Judaism every day of the working week (and often Sundays) for 8 to 10 hours a day (sometimes more). Don’t get me wrong, I love it! I also practice Judaism every day and know there is a difference between the two. However, while I hesitate to admit it, the last thing I want to do on Shabbat is immerse in Jewish prayer, song and feasting. Why? Because in so many ways, my study and preparation for class brings me closer to my identity, helps me strengthen my faith and commits me more to its observance. However, when it comes to Shabbat, traditional observance feels like work and does not re-soul me the way it should. Continue reading “Shomer Shabbos: Finding Meaning in the Observance of Shabbat by Ivy Helman”