- Posted by Elaine Zecher
- On March 3, 2017
- 0 Comments
Welcome to Shabbat Awakenings, a weekly reflection as we move toward Shabbat.
This week’s Torah portion revolves around instructions by God to Moses to build the traveling sanctuary the Jewish people will carry with them through the wilderness as they make their way toward the Promised Land. It will be a communal building project laid out with very specific details.
But this is not the first time the Israelites receive construction instructions. That happened at the creation of the world with Shabbat and elaborated on in Exodus about its observance. Six days a week, we labor but the seventh day summons us into a different way of being. We enter a moment in time. The holiness of the day creates a different kind of space.
Abraham Joshua Heschel thought of Shabbat as a sanctuary in time.
Judaism teaches us to be attached to holiness in time, to be attached to sacred events, to learn how to consecrate sanctuaries that emerge from the magnificent stream of a year. The Sabbaths are our great cathedrals…Jewish ritual may be characterized as the art of significant forms in time, as architecture of time.
Though attached to the idea of physicality, we might imagine ourselves arriving through a portal of time, carried into a place of holiness. It will depend on each of us how we will decorate and inhabit this space. The sacred will surround us as we make our way through the day. Shabbat then becomes a thoroughly different kind of construction project we can build each week. The resources and building materials are already provided. How shall we use them to consecrate such a sanctuary?
Come join in tonight for a captivating musical Qabbalat Shabbat at 6 p.m. Torah study begins at 9 a.m. with a short Shabbat morning service followed by an engaging discussion.
I welcome your responses and comments here.
 The Sabbath Abraham Joshua Heschel