Healing Havdalah

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What are you up to on November 8? Depending who you are, either celebrating, stewing, or plotting revenge against fraudulent voting booths/elderly Jewish neo-Nazis in Forida, most likely.

bonfire, courtesy of WikipediaLimmudLA is planning a giant bonfire on Dockwiler beach in Los Angeles that night. As the event page says, “The etiquette of the evening is that we will not cheer for the winner or lament for the loser. We will not speak publicly or even whisper between us to make anyone feel that they voted the wrong way….We will celebrate Havdalah together on the beach and sing our hearts out. We will then break into small groups on the sand for a Torah-inspired learning session about healing community differences.”

The location alone — “where the 105/Imperial Highway meets the beach” — makes me get nostalgic for Los Angeles. (I’ll actually be on a plane to LA that night, en route to the AJU Celebration of Jewish Books, so burn some wood for me.) On our site, we talk about the idea of Havdalah as bringing a drop of Shabbat into the week, and there’s nothing these next few weeks are going to need more than some good healthy helpings of Shabbat. If you’re around Los Angeles, you should definitely drop by.

And, like all Limmud ideas, this is viral, so if anyone is planning another convocation of this sort (or gets spontaneously inspired to), let us know.

Posted on October 24, 2008

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