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Thoughts on Shabbat

by Christa on March 11, 2014

in Daily Digest,Haus Ginsburg,Holidays Happen,Life Story

This weekend we did something a little unorthodox, and by unorthodox I mean totally orthodox. Hah, ok – let me explain. I’ve been getting really upset and depressed lately by the lack of quality family time I get thanks to mostly work. So I mentioned to Shane that maybe we should start observing Shabbat, the sabbath. Shabbat is set apart from other days of the week (and on the seventh day He rested), and orthodox Jews don’t do any work at all – no driving, no cooking, no turning on and off lights even! It’s meant to be a day of reflection. But we’re reform, which basically means we pick and choose what rules to follow or fit into our lives (prior to this, we did not observe at all). ┬áLike…not cooking or turning on lights is just not realistic for our lifestyle.


BUT we have an opportunity to use this day as our family day. It won’t always get to work out like that. For instance, next week I have the pub crawl for LLS. It could even be argued that it doesn’t count, because the money I’m raising goes toward saving lives, which falls under pikuach nefesh (the Jewish law stating that the saving of a life allows one to break any other commandment). I even had a more religious friend tell me she was not fasting on Yom Kippur so she could run the Be the Match 5K – pikuach nefesh!

We needed a break. A break from phone calls, texting, TV, email, Facebook (ok that one’s just me), Twitter, blogs, etc. So at sundown on Friday, we put our phones on Do Not Disturb and didn’t look at them again until Saturday at sundown. I let my friends with whom I constantly text know I was doing this and Marisa and Jess had the exact same reaction – “What???” Hah!

It was GREAT. First of all, I already know I am addicted to technology. Any time I get the slightest bit bored or anxious, my fingers start itching for my phone. Oy. Since that was off limits, we got to do other things. We listened to and sang children’s songs to Rachel (I think Shane hates the Raffi station on Pandora now). We played Scrabble. We went grocery shopping (driving wasn’t on our no-no list). I ran and swam. We took lots of Rachie photos with our new camera; I will post some soon! They’re much better quality than my iPhone photos.

I would say that the last couple of hours were the hardest. I was sort of in the “ok, I get the point” mindset by then and was ready to chat with some friends. But honestly, I loved it and we’re definitely going to keep doing it. I’d love to incorporate some more traditional aspects, like lighting candles, kiddush, challah, and havdalah. I think it will be a great tradition for our children to grow up with, and that way we can keep our family time.

Who else does something special for the sabbath? Or do you have a weekly family night?

{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Crystal@TheFastFitRunner March 14, 2014 at 11:30 am

I think this is great! I have been thinking about my tech addiction recently as well. It only came into being when Tyson was born! Before that, I rarely got on my phone for anything but texting. Such is life.

I hope you continue this in some form or fashion, definitely think it is healthy and wise!


Christa March 16, 2014 at 10:55 am

Oh, that’s funny! I have def been addicted for awhile and need to break it. We do plan to continue this when convenient. We’re reform, after all.


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