WHAT WE DO EACH
Each week in Synagogues
around the world Jews celebrate the reading of the Torah by reciting the parsha – the portion for the week. The
Torah is the Jews' own story, the equivalent of the Iliad for Greeks, The Nibelungenlied for Germans, King
Arthur for the English , The Norse Sagas, Don Quixote for the Spaniards, The New Testament for Christians and
the Koran for Muslims. It is the center point of our connection with Jews everywhere - it is our
The existence of Israel
is integral to our history. It is impossible to talk about the Jewish contribution to the world without
talking about Israel. Whether Israel matters for you is a personal
decision. If you have problems with Israel, I can only ask that you use the same standards that you use to
judge Israel and use them to judge other countries.
Belief in god is a personal
issue and is not likely to come up in discussion with others in The Good Shabbos Community. The approach taken
to the Torah is a non-religious one and examines the stories from a rational viewpoint. You are free to
make your own interpretations.
WHAT FOLLOWS IS A SMORGASBORD OF
ACTIVITIES. CHOOSE FROM THE TABLE OR BRING YOUR OWN
SUGGESTIONS. THE IMPORTANT THING IS TO FIND A COMBINATION OF THINGS THAT
YOU ENJOY AND WILL BRING YOU TOGETHER AGAIN AND AGAIN.
ESSENTIAL ACTIVITY IS DOING SOMETHING TOGETHER - THAT MAKES
We start by reading an English language version of the parsha. You can abbreviate it or summarise it. Your
choice. I would suggest that one or two people at the celebration say a
few sentences to explain this story. You don't need to bore everybody to tears by reading out long
A commentary follows in the
form of a discussion between a composite character Sigmund (Freud) Albert (Einstein) Baruch (Spinoza)
SAS representing the secular world and Solomon Methuselah SM representing the traditional faith and defending the
Orthodox Rabbis would say
that these interpretations are based on the Karaite version of the Torah - the actual words used and not the
oral traditions etc. If, as everything is God's will, as they say, then the interpretation on this site must
also be God's will and is every bit as valid as their interpretation. If it wasn't valid, it would not
Then a short commentary about Jewish history, some sayings
from the Shtetl and two Jewish people who have advanced civilisation in some important way.
Please read and select from
the above or make your own information.
You may need to print out
some pages so that everybody can participate.
To make things interesting,
each person could say a few words about the family origins and about how the family came to live where it does.
Most Jews have come from someplace else. You could talk about some intersting characters in the family from
previous generations. Every piece of information increases your connectivity with other people.
Please remember that the
list below looks religious but it only has the original names so that the Good Shabbos Community can be in synch
with the rest of the Jewish world and tell our story in the same order.
Our story is longest story
in the world from the people with the longest continued existence.
Check the name in the third
column and look for it in the next section - WEEKLY CONTENT. That is for the date in the first column
which changes every year because the Jewish calendar is a lunar calendar based on the moon and the dates are
never the same.
same in our calendar.
A Selection of Ceremonies For Lighting Candles, Drinking Wine And EatingChalleh
To Say Over Candles:
The lighting of the Sabbath candles is one of the most familiar customs connected to Shabbes and
one that is part of our collective memory. According to tradition, candles are lit on Friday just before
sunset, usually by the mother and daughters of the household, though they may be lit by any Jew. The lighting of the candles signifies the spiritual essence of the
Sabbath. Candlelight flickers, spreading its light and its
warmth. It envelops us in peace, sholem bayis (family harmony),
the light of learning, and the hope for the continuity of the Jewish people. Personal wishes for health and well-being go out from our hearts to all of
our loved ones.
Naomi Prawer Kadar, Shabbes (Workmen’s Circle/Arbeter Ring, 1995)
We light these candles to celebrate our coming together.
They reflect the light in our lives and the warmth we find in our extended
They generate a feeling of togetherness, and connect us to our Jewish history and
May our time together bring us joy and a renewed sense of commitment to our people and all
Violet Cherlin, Long Island Havurah for Humanistic Judaism
We rejoice in our heritage which has given us the tradition of lighting the Shabbes
Ashreinu bi'yerushateinu she'masrah lonu et hatoreshet l’hadlik ner shel
Mir freyen zikh mit undzer yerusheh vos hot undz gegebn di traditsiye foon ontsindn di Shabbes
Judith Seid, We Rejoice on Our Heritage: Home Rituals
for Secular Jews
Barukh haor baolam.
Radiant is the light in the world
Barukh haor ba’adam.
Radiant is the light of humanity.
Barukh haor bashabbat
Radiant is the light of the Sabbath.
Rabbi Sherwin T. Wine
To say over Wine/Grape Juice:
In the warm glow of the candles' shine,
we lift the brimming cup of wine.
As Jews for centuries before,
sharing Jewish life and lore.
In praise of harmony and rest,
ideals of justice, freedom's quest.
A world of brotherhood and peace,
where poverty and hate will cease.
At our Shabbes celebration,
we renew our dedication,
To all that's Jewish/Yiddish,
in this, our special Kiddish.
By Naomi Prawer Kadar, Shabbes, (Workmen’s
Circle/Arbeter Ring, 1995)
We rejoice in our heritage which has given us the cup of wine [grape juice] as the symbol of our
happiness. We rejoice in our heritage which has given us the Sabbath, a day of rest. It is first among our
holidays and a reminder of the Exodus from Egypt.
Borukh shalom baolam.
We bless peace in all the world.
Borukh shalom baodam.
We bless peace among all people.
Borukh shalom bashabbbat.
We bless the peace and joy of this Shabbat.
Rabbi Sherwin T. Wine
To say over Challeh:
In tasting bread, we remember the hungry. May there
be a day when no human being suffers the pain and desolation of hunger. May the bounty we enjoy help us to bring to fruition the vision of a
besere un a shenere velt, a better and more beautiful
Naomi Prawer Kadar, Shabbes, (Workmen’s
Circle/Arbeter Ring, 1995)
We rejoice in our heritage that teaches us to love our earth that gives us wheat and to honor
the farmers who grow it and the workers who make it into bread.
(Christian Verses in blue)
|September 11, 2010
||Deuteronomy 32:1 - 32:52
||Leviticus 16:1 - 34,
Numbers 29:7 - 11.
Leviticus 18:1 - 30
||Sukkot, Day 3,
||Exodus 33:12 - 34:26
Numbers 29:17 - 25
||In the beginning
||Genesis 1:1 - 6:8
||Genesis 6:9 - 11:32
||Go forth, yourself!
||Genesis 12:1 - 17:27
||And He appeared
||Genesis 18:1 - 22:24
||Life of Sarah
||Genesis 23:1 - 25:18
||Genesis 25:19 - 28:9
||And he went out
||Genesis 28:10 - 32:3
(28:10 - 32:2)
||And he sent
||Genesis 32:4 - 36:43
(32:3 - 36:43)
||And he settled
||Genesis 37:1 - 40:23
||At the end of
||Genesis 41:1 - 44:17
||And he drew near
||Genesis 44:18 - 47:27
||And he lived
||Genesis 47:28 - 50:26
||Exodus 1:1 - 6:1
|January 1, 2011
||And I appeared
||Exodus 6:2 - 9:35
||Exodus 10:1 - 13:16
||When he let go
||Exodus 13:17 - 17:16
Exodus 18:1 - 20:23
||Exodus 21:1 - 24:18
||Exodus 25:1 - 27:19
||You shall command
||Exodus 27:20 - 30:10
||When you elevate
||Exodus 30:11 - 34:35
||And he assembled
||Exodus 35:1 - 38:20
||Exodus 38:21 - 40:38
||And He called
||Leviticus 1:1 - 5:26
(1:1 - 5:19)
||Leviticus 6:1 - 8:36
||Leviticus 9:1 - 11:47
||She bears seed
||Leviticus 12:1 - 13:59
||Leviticus 14:1 - 15:33
||After the death
||Leviticus 16:1 - 18:30
||Pesach, day 5
||Exodus 33:12 - 34:26
Numbers 28:19 - 25
||Leviticus 19:1 - 20:27
||Leviticus 21:1 - 24:23
||On the Mount
||Leviticus 25:1 -26:2
||In My statutes
||Leviticus 26:3 - 27:34
||In the wilderness
||Numbers 1:1 - 4:20
||Numbers 4:21 - 7:89
||In your making go up
||Numbers 8:1 - 12:16
||Send for yourself
||Numbers 13:1 - 15:41
||Numbers 16:1 - 18:32
||Numbers 19:1 - 22:1
||Numbers 22:2 - 25:9
||Numbers 25:10 - 30:1
(25:10 - 29:40)
||Numbers 30:2 - 32:42
(30:1 - 32:42)
||Numbers 33:1 - 36:13
||Deuteronomy 1:1 - 3:22
||And I besought
||Deuteronomy 3:23 - 7:11
||Deuteronomy 7:12 - 11:25
||Deuteronomy 11:26 - 16:17
||Deuteronomy 16:18 - 21:9
||When you go out
||Deuteronomy 21:10 - 25:19
||When you come in
||Deuteronomy 26:1 - 29:8
(26:1 - 29:9)
Deuteronomy 29:9 - 30:20
Deuteronomy 31:1 - 31:30