Congregation Etz Hayim at Hollis Hills Bayside

The consolidated communities of Hollis Hills Bayside Jewish Center and Marathon Jewish Community Center

Shabbat Beshalah 5778

The Israelites stood on the shore of the Sea of Reeds, having crossed over miraculously in safety on dry land, with the pursuing enemy vanquished by the water. In this moment of extreme emotion, they were driven by the impulse to sing. Shirat Hayam–the Song of the Sea–is the product of this creative impulse. That’s what we read this week, in Parshat Beshalah, otherwise known as Shabbat Shirah.
 
Certain events stimulate these forms of creativity; in turn, the words and melodies cascade and create other emotions. Rather than write about this phenomenon, I’m going to share two video clips as evidence. We will talk about what motivated these two events, and what happens as a result of them. The first video, which you can watch here, is from a Toronto initiative called Choir!Choir!Choir! The second, which you can find by following this link, is the latest video from a recent start-up pop-up choir in Israel called Kululam.
 
Don’t worry if you don’t know the songs or understand the words. Just try to connect to the impulse, and look for the results of that impulse. We’ll dig deeper on the morning of Shabbat Shirah!
 
Wishing you a Shabbat Shalom,
Rabbi David Wise