Thursday, October 9, 2008

L'Shana Haba'ah B'Yerushalayim

I know in America you're all still having Yom Kippur, but here it's over and we are no longer fasting (although by the time any of your are reading this, neither will you be!). :)

Just a few notes.

First of all, aside from my year in Israel (which I don't count much in terms of chagim at school because the atmosphere created there was created by the school, not just by naturally being in Israel), this was my first Yom Kippur in an Israeli shul and it was a bit of a different experience. I know that when I was younger, I used to get mixed up between Yom Kippur being a sad day vs. a serious day. But here, it is clearly not a sad day. Serious, yes, but there was so much uplifting singing and there was even dancing at the end in the mens' section for L'Shana Habah and it was just so...Yom Tov-ish. Which it should be! It is still a yom tov, even though it's a serious one.

Also, the windows of the shul were huge and open and it was just amazing to daven such intense teffilot while looking out at Israel. There's just no comparison.

Also, when they blew the shofar at the end, the guy blowing teaches a shofar class to some kids so the kids all blew and it was like a choir of shofarot. It was really cool sounding.

Also, I have never seen this before, but in the mens' section, there were guys walking around offering smelling salts to everyone else. Smelling salts. That's what they used to use in the olden days, like in Jane Austen's time and earlier, to revive women who were faint. But I didn't see any smelling salts in the women's section. Only the men. Hmmm. :P

Shana tova to everyone and I hope you all had an easy and meaningful fast!

Next year in Jerusalem! For ALL of us!


RaggedyMom said...

Nothing like celebrating holidays where they were meant to be celebrated. I'm glad you had a good experience.

When I was growing up, at YI of Queens Valley on our very own Main Street, there were kids sent around in both sections with some kind of citrus (lemon? esrog?) with cloves stuck in all over it which was supposed to revive people.

I tend to get faint when fasting (darned low blood pressure!) and there was a year when they did crack open ammonia under my nose. That only happened again while I was delivering my kids.

L'Shana Haba'ah indeed!!

Diana said...

The reason they pass around smelling salts or etrogim is so that people can make a borei minei bsamim and try and reach 100 brachos.