Friday, January 25, 2008

שבת מנוחה

There is a song that Israeli kids sing on Friday's in Gan (and bigger kids in the army):

היום יום ששי
מחר שבת
שבת מנוחה

Now in the religious school system, they sing the words שבת קודש instead of שבת מנוחה. I never understood why. I imagine that the aim is in some manner to say that Shabbat is not simply a day to rest, unwind, relax but rather an active spiritual day in which we connect with God, and Torah etc.

But what's wrong with resting - just resting - sleeping, reading the newspaper (God forbid!), hanging with the wife 'n kids on Shabbat? After all, the famous Shabbat Zemer "Yom Zeh Leyisrael" has the chorus line of "Shabbat Menucha"! We use the phrase Shabbat Menucha in a Shabbat liturgy. And let's not forget... God Himself rested on Shabbat!

Soemtimes Shabbat is a crazy hectic day with lots of shul (too much sometimes ... dare I blaspheme?) and huge amount sof entertaining guests. It then is neither Shabbat Kodesh nor Shabbat Menucha.

And to create a spiritual "Shabbat Kodesh" is a challeneg in itself.

This has been a crazy week. This week, I, for one , am looking forward to a good 12 hour sleep tonight.
שבת מנוחה

1 comment:

Jesse said...

So. It seems like we, כל בני אדם, do better, or at least seem to do better, with the first five commandments then the last five. I'm not sure the popular thematic breakup between the first five commandments (concerning man with God) and the last five (of man with his fellow) is all that precise. There is also factor of דביקות ה, not just ritual or speech, but about being true to ourselves in the way we connect with God. I think a huge chunk of society who feel they have a healthy relationship with God are only fooling themselves. It might be due to a lacking of חשבון נפש,a sincerity and authentic understanding of how and why we relate to God, or (for the religious) an obsessive, critical observance of הלכה that is empty, void of any romance and lacking in emotional understanding.
I think that today, the way our society relates to God is just as difficult to gage as the way we relate to one another.