July 2018
Rabbi Lisa Goldstein
Resting as Spiritual Practice
Years ago I was a group leader for the American Jewish World Service Alternative Spring Breaks. I would accompany groups of college students to poor countries, mostly in Central America, to learn about global poverty and American Jewish responsibility. There were very few rules about how we would observe Jewish traditions on those week-long visits, but one of them was that we would not work on Shabbat.

That was difficult for some students. We were there to work! To help out! The need was so great! How could we waste a day resting?

Practices in this Letter
Rabbi Myriam Klotz
Rabbi Jonathan Slater
Rabbi Jordan Bendat-Appell
Rabbi Faith Joy Dantowitz
Restful Prayer
Rabbi Myriam Klotz
Master yoga teacher Rolf Gates once shared this story: One day, his wife went out early to work. He had many tasks to accomplish that morning (trips to the grocery, the bank, the vet, getting a car inspected, and preparing for an immersive workshop he would be teaching that weekend), all the while on childcare duty with his three-year-old daughter. 

Hitlamdut: Integrated Study
Rabbis Lisa Goldstein and David Jaffe
For many of us, the summer season offers opportunities to slow down, to find time for recreation and rest. But often the impulse to do things differently, to make the most of vacation, leads to frenetic activity. We drive fast or travel great distances in an attempt to squeeze in the most we can. We plan multiple stops, important activities, sights to see and things to do. And often we wind up more exhausted at the end of our vacation than when we began.

Guided Practice for Menucha
Rabbi Jordan Bendat-Appell
Menuchah /rest is a quality of experience, a way of being in our lives that requires active cultivation. Without this, it is likely that we will only be in an orientation of fixing, making, figuring out and doing. This teaching and meditation flows from how our Sages, as brought forward by R. Abraham Joshua Heschel, as he understood the verse "On the  seventh  day, God finished the work that God had been doing (Gen. 2:2).

Hashkivenu: Bless This Day and Let it Go
Rabbi Faith Joy Dantowitz
Cause us, Adonai our God, to lie down beshalom (in peace), fulfilled from the day.

God, help us to know whether this day was difficult or rich with pleasure;
You are here for us.
Thank You for Your presence in my life on days of joy and sadness.
The daily lists are long and I am tired God.
Though weary, my thoughts are racing.

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