Tuesday, February 08, 2011

Zoo Minyan - No Davenning, but some learning, Sat. Feb. 26th

Zoo Minyan is not meeting for davenning Sat.
Feb 26.

Sorry folks! Insufficient leyning turn-out for Zoo this shabbos, wouldn't be lichvod Torah. Apologies for the short notice / change of plans.

But feel free to stop by for some learning after davenning elsewhere (or after shaarei sheina / sleeping in, as is your custom).

We'll have some awesome texts on Hulda the prophetess's role at the Beit ha-Mikdash, on the difference between the Mishkan and the Beit ha-Mikdash, and we may even experiment with some (shabbos-friendly) mishkan-building of our own.

1:30pm at Deborah and Shalom's house, challah and light snacks provided, add a pot-luck contribution if you'd like.

Good shabbos!

P.S. We're considering some chasiddishe non-davenning events for Zoo Minyan. Write back to info@ZooMinyan.org if you want to get in on the plotting.


SPECIAL NOTE: Sat. Feb 12 is Erev Shira/ Evening of Song (folk singing and musical instruments) Come join us Sat. night - 6:30pm; Havdallah & then singing -with Instruments.

(now back to info on regular Zoo Minyan Sat.)

The opening pasuk of this week's Parsha (Shmot 27:20) says, “Tell Israel, that they should take for you pure olive oil, beaten for the light, to bring up the Ner Tamid [continuous light]”. This verse is cited in the gemara (Shabbat 21a) as a proof-text:

Rami bar Hama taught, “the wicks and oils that the sages decreed cannot be used for kindling the shabbat [lights], cannot be used in the Mikdash [the Temple]....For the flame should rise from itself, and not ascend by means of something else.”

One interpretation is that we are the olive oil, and holiness is the flame. The eternal light, the blinding presence of the holy, is something that happens naturally – unbelievable as that seems, until we actually experience it. But it only happens when we've prepared for it. The purity of the olive oil takes a lot of work, as we're pounded through the mortar of life.

When we can step back from that necessary work, and enter into shabbos menuchah, then we are drawn up into the wick, and become part of that brilliant flame. Rami bar Hama says, that process happens by ourselves, not through another: by virtue of where we are (the Mikdash, or whatever holy spaces we create), when we are most ourselves (shabbos, of course), and especially, who we are – or who we've made ourselves to be.

May your mortar yield sediment-free oil this week, and may you be drawn up into the wick of the Ner Tamid this shabbos, and every shabbos – including the next Zoo Minyan, on February 26th.


We'll be gathering for davenning, lunch, shmoozing, singing, etc., Sat. Feb 26 in Woodley Park (within walking distance of the Zoo, as is Zoo Minyan custom) at Deborah & Shalom's house.

Want to volunteer to lead something for davenning, or add something to enrich our kavannah (we call them davenning treats, i.e. creative tidbits, not actual food ;) Schlep a sefer torah, or bring some Zoo Minyan veggies? Write back to info@ZooMinyan.org.

For Leyning there are aliyot available (please sign up if you can!)...use self-service leyning spreadsheet, or email leyning@ZooMinyan.org.

The Details:

Zoo Minyan
Saturday, Parshat Vayakhel, 26 Feb
10am sharp, with a rockin' Psukei d'Zimrah
Pot-luck dairy/veggie lunch -- main courses especially appreciated

At the home of Deborah Hittleman Flank & Shalom Flank. For directions, check your Zoo mail, or email info@ZooMinyan.org

Shabbat Shalom

Monday, February 07, 2011

Next Zoo Minyan - Sat. Feb. 26th

To lead, Leyn, offer a Davenning Treat, or bring Zoo Minyan veggies, contact us.

email yes@zooMinyan.org

See you soon!