The company "Wix", began in Israel. This company is a website designing program that is super affordable and began in Tel Aviv. The company began in 2006. I think it's so cool that this company grew into something so big that is now used around the world.
I saw a local production of "Fiddler on the Roof." I saw this play at my friend's sister's middle school. I have heard of this story, but had never actually seen the movie or the play until recently. The biggest takeaway I got from this story was that a grim life can be much better by keeping Jewish culture alive and staying close with other Jews.
This is a screenshot of me using the Waze App. I think it is so cool that this app was started by an Israeli! I use this app anyway, and after visiting Israel, learned that it originated there. I want to support the Israeli people! Supporting someone with their development means showing them that you care.
I uploaded my post
I went to the Chabad of Maine temple. I went with my friend Emma on Thursday, April 5th in the morning. This was on the sixth day of passover. I'm not usually an early morning person, so choosing to go to the early service was an accomplishment! I went to the synagogue to celebrate and connect with other Jews during Passover season. A moment that inspired me during the service was when the rabbi eluded to a story commonly told on the seventh day of passover. This story is about when the Red Sea split, and the Jews were free from the wrath of Egypt. This story inspires me. Finally, the Jewish people could be free from the opression of Egypt.
I had a fun Shabbat meal with my friend Katie the other day. We had it at my downtown apartment. We ordered some grilled chicken, potatoes, and corn. We listened to some Jewish Klesmer music, and danced with each other. It was fun!
Chabad Lubavitch of Maine is the name of the synagogue I attended. It is located in Portland, Maine. I hadn't found a local synagogue in Portland until I attended this one. The building was really beautiful and had some ornate decorations. One thing I really like about going to a synagogue, is that it provides you with a good Jewish community of people. I plan to go back with some of my other Jewish friends in the future, and hope to meet more people that are my age.
Whenever I'm near my family during Passover time, I love to have a Seder with them. This year, I had Passover at my friend Emma's house. We invited over a couple non- Jewish friends to join as well. We ate the traditional foods of the passover meal. For example: unleavened bread (matza), bitter herbs, and shank bone. My friend Emma and I lead the group by explaining the meanings of the specific foods. I enjoyed sharing some Jewish culture with my non- Jewish friends. There isn't a huge Jewish population where I'm from, but many of my friends have had an interest in exploring the traditions of Passover. The most meaningful part of the event was explaining the significance of the particular foods, it gave me a chance to share about the opression Jews have faced throughout time.
Israel has overcome so much. It's interesting to be informed that Israel has tried to make multiple peace offers, and has been rejected. Growing up in New England, in America, I have heard many different persectives of the Palestine/ Israeli conflict. It's frustrating that Israel came close to making agreements multiple times that ultimately were not successful. I like hearing about this global issue from a Jewish perspective. Israel has undergone a lot of change over the years.
I went to the National Musuem of American Jewish Military History in Washington D.C. a few weeks ago! I saw the Major General Julius Klein and American Jewish Recipients of the Congressional Medal of Honor exhibits. I was directed to a website by the Veterans Department of Affairs that highlights nurses in the Israeli military, and learned about some notable nurses while at the museum. I also learned that Albert Einstein, a Jew, was an important physicist with military science developments. The visit to this musuem has affirmed how proud I am to be Jewish. I'm grateful for the opportunity to have gone on Birthright and have learned about American Israelis who fought in the military.
The book I read was called ‘My Promised Land,’ by Ari Shavit. I learned about the Zionist history the projects in the late 19th and early 20th centuries of Israel. Many of these projects were done to create a "paradise state."This book changed my outlook of Israel by explaining what the country means to the author. Shavit offers a beautiful perspective of what it means to consider Israel a true home, and I felt it was from an unbiased perspective.
I interviewed my uncle Jakob. He originally is from Tel Aviv, and immigrated here at the age of 33. I chose to speak with him because it's amazing that he came all the way here to Miami, as a first generation immigrant. He told me about his experiences of cultural differences after moving to America. Even though he was able to find a Jewish community in Miami, he still felt that it was a big culture shock and a large adjustment socially. We are related by marriage and not by blood, but I feel especially connected to his experience after personally visiting Israel myself. He suggested that Americans could have made his experience of moving here better by being more understanding of the language barrier he faced. He knew some English before coming, but had an extremely thick accent.
I experienced shabbat for the first time in Israel. I was inspired by the idea of regularly relinquishing access to my phone for a day. And the symbolism behind it. To give myself space, quiet, ability to enjoy my family and friends without creating nor destroying energy. I chose this commitment because I want to practice continuing experiencing the sacred.
In the desert, we sat in a circle and were prompted to speak whatever was on our mind. I'll never forget the way Taylor started off the circle with brutal honesty about what she's realized about herself on the trip and with making a promise to expect more from herself. Her candor directed the rest of the circle to be honest and open. I was humbled by the words of so many and shared my struggles and fears which birthright had given me an opportunity to explore more deeply. We sat in silence for moments after in comfort and gratitude for the sacred and unrepeatable experience.
Sarah means princess. Biblically, she is the mother of Isaac and wife of Abraham. She keeps her tent open from all directions to allow for all types of people and thought to enter her home. This name was given to me but I think it works for me and is something I cherish. I'd like to embody her ability to welcome anyone with open arms.
I like the morning prayer "I am thankful before You, living and enduring King, for you have mercifully restored my soul within me. Great is Your faithfulness."
I think it means I have another chance to be good, give love each dat. I like the idea of the soul being something that can be restored. Almost like it has a chance to begin anew each day. I chose this prayer as it speaks to new beginnings. I can see myself implementing it in my life in the future.
I loved celebrating Hanukkah with my family. Not only for the gelt, but also for the warmth of having loved ones all at the table eating gefilte fish, baked babka and latkes. Having all my grandparents together, my grandfather reciting prayers in hebrew is still one of my favorite memories.
I hosted a shabbat meal with my friends once I got back from my trip. I've had Jewish friends but we never spent shabbat together. I invited them over, we lit candles, said prayers, discussed what it meant to be a Jewish woman in the world. It was an evening that brought us all together and brought me closer to my heritage.
After the birthright trip, many of us stayed in Tel-Aviv and hosted our own Shabbat dinner. We ate traditional Jewish foods and broke challah, recited prayers and spent the evening reflecting on the trip.
I had my Bat Mitzvah at the top of Masada, on the birthright trip. I didn't celebrate when I turned 12. In my speech, I wrote about what it means to take on a role as a Woman part of a larger community. How separated I felt growing up as part of a Russian household that did not focus on its' judaism. And what it felt like to be able to reclaim a part of my history. I loved the experience.
I participated in a dance choreographed by Sephardic Syrian Jewish woman Florence Nasar. Her piece, "Women's Section" explored what it means to be a Jewish woman growing within the confines of the women's section in a synagogue. Exploring themes such as what it means to be the object of attention as opposed to what the female gaze entails. The dance is statement of female empowerment within often restricted traditions of the synagogue.
I went to a prayer service at my local synagogue on Shabbat. I felt a little out of place, but the experience was worthwhile. I met people who hadn't been religious their whole lives and chose to look into religion later in life.
Shabbat in Israel give you a taste of something delightful?! You can continue to keep that feeling alive by completing the Shabbat badge. Complete the two activities below and earn an additional 10 point bonus!
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AboutThe 100 Point Challenge is an opportunity for returning Taglit-Birthright participants to TRY a variety of Jewish activities, find those activities that they LOVE and want to continue to LIVE. Bring Israel Home participants can choose to complete any Jewish activity that speaks to them to earn 100 points. 50% or more of the American participants in a participating Taglit-Birthright bus must earn 100 points on the Bring Israel Home website within three months after returning from their Taglit-Birthright experience to earn a Bring Israel Home reunion. The Bring Israel Home 100 Point Challenge is divided into two milestones. Participants must earn 50 points within the first month of returning from their Taglit-Birthright experience to qualify for the following milestone. After achieving the first milestone, participants have two months to earn their final 50 points of Jewish activity. The milestones are clearly outlines below:MilestonesMilestone 1: 50% of a Taglit-Birthright bus must complete 50 points of Jewish activity in the first month after returning from their Taglit-Birthright experience. Milestone 2: 50% of a Taglit-Birthright bus must complete 100 points of Jewish activity in the two months after achieving Milestone 1. Travel Stipends*:
Find out everything you ever wanted to know about the State of Israel - engage with its history and people, get the facts on Israel's hot topics and discover why Israel is so central to world news and politics. In Israel Inside/Out, animated diagrams and interactive footage give you an insider's view into one of the world's most intriguing and mystifying countries – no airfare required.
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What is happiness? Am I happy? Can I become happier? What do happiness and Judaism have to do with each other, anyway?
Get the answers to these questions as well as the secret to being happier with Jerusalem U's new series Habits of Happiness featuring world-renowned Positive Psychology expert Dr. Tal Ben-Shahar.Earn 10 bonus points by completing this badge.
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Judaism 101 provides a broad overview of Jewish thought and insight. Course topics include Love and Relationships, Achieving Success, Gossip, Kabbalah, the History of Jerusalem, and Jewish Contributions to World Values.Earn 10 bonus points by completing this badge.
Masa Israel Journey is the leader in immersive international experiences in Israel for young adults (18-30). Masa's diverse portfolio of study abroad, internship, service learning, or Jewish studies programs help you grow—as a person, a professional, and a leader— while also developing a robust global professional network. Since its founding in 2004, over 120,000 young people from more than 60 countries have participated in Masa Israel programs.Earn 10 bonus points by completing this badge. Note: Masa Israel Journey is intended for North American participants only. Unfortunately, Israeli participants are not eligible for Masa.
At The Maimonides Fellowship, you will have the opportunity to meet with like-minded peers with a choice of over 100 locations nationwide. The program meets 1x a week for 10 weeks and includes an exciting Shabbaton Weekend Retreat. The weekly meetings include FREE food, along with dynamic discussion on HOT topics relating to Israel and Judaism. Upon completion, Fellowship participants typically receive $300-$500 CASH or a FREE/Highly subsidized trip!
Take part in interactive classes from the comfort of your own home with the JU Max online learning program. Classes are all live, online, and interactive with top notch presenters. Participants who complete the entire class will be eligible for a FREE TRIP BACK TO ISRAEL and can also receive college credit*. NOTE: JU Max is only available to students and young professionals who do not live near a local Maimonides Class option. To see the list of local options, CLICK HERE.
Classes are Monday evening 9-11PM EST.
The next course runs from Feb 12 -April 16.
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