All are welcome to participate in Shabbat on the slopes | TahoeDailyTribune.com
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All are welcome to participate in Shabbat on the slopes

Rabbi Evon J. Yakar

Rabbi Jamie Korngold, the founder of Adventure Rabbi, wrote, “How do you transform a day of powder skiing into a holy day? By stopping to notice a snow-dusted Douglas fir tree you might have skied by on another day. By learning the prayer for falling snow and teaching it to a friend. By sharing our dreams, hopes, and aspirations, rather than complaining about the pressures of work and stress in our overcommitted lives.”

Well, there may not be much powder these days, but there is much to be gained spiritually by putting on the sticks or the snowboard and sliding around on snow. For the last four seasons, Adventure Rabbi and Temple Bat Yam have joined forces to bring Shabbat on Snow to Heavenly Mountain.

They meet in front of Tamarack Lodge both at 10 a.m. and then again at 12:30 p.m. The first meeting is to enjoy some turns together and then after a short lunch break, they re-convene for a short (30-minute) Jewish Sabbath service.

Enjoying natural environment transforms skiing into a holy day. From the meaningful conversations on the lifts, to the quietude of turns and back to the chatting on the lifts, the group moves through the Sabbath (Shabbat in Hebrew) with a commitment to enjoying the beauty of the world.

Shabbat is a time that invites people to take a break from the weekdays. It can inspire people to break from the things they work so hard at and embrace all that is created naturally.

Rabbi Abraham Joshua Heschel wrote, “It is a day on which we are called upon to share in what is eternal in time, to turn from the results of creation to the mystery of creation; from the world of creation to the creation of the world.” (The Sabbath, p. 10)

All are welcome, Jewish and non-Jewish, to soak in the creation of the world.


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