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The year spent in seminary in Israel is a very special and critical time in the life of a young Jewish woman. Within this relatively short span of time there is a disproportionately large amount of spiritual and emotional growth , which lays the foundation and sets the tone for one's continued path in life.

It is vital for time be set aside for reflection in order to allow for processing and greater self-awareness. Within the context of the art chug at MMY, participants are encouraged to share moments of inspiration which they have had over the course of their Israel experience, and share them with each other through artistic expression

Four projects are planned for the year. Each one is designed to guide each young woman express her own unique spiritual path. The first project focuses on an object of inspiration, and is based on a realistic approach to art. The second project will introduce abstract techniques as we explore the theme of inspirational places we have visited in Israel. The third project will introduce surrealism and symbolic representation as a tool for spiritual reflection. A group collage is planned as well, designed to foster camaraderie and creativity as a community.

The year has begun with a strong and positive reception for the art class. Everyone has begun to keep a diary of thoughts, feelings, and inspirations. We have started to share from our inner world and to plan out in a practical way how we may go about expressing ourselves through artistic medium.

Read more: Self-Awareness and Spiritual Growth through Artistic Expression with Geula Twersky

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Shoshana Cohen, Current MMY Student

As with every new cohort, the talmidot of MMY 5778 began their year beside the Kotel, listening to the advice of Rabbi Katz and considering their aspirations for the months ahead. During this time, one student, Shoshana Cohen from London, managed to compose her thoughts and wrote this poem which we share with you. 

The air is a cool caress against my cheek,
Aching and patient and kind.
A loud cry pollutes it, the call to prayer,
A call to prayer that intrudes and invades
And ravages the gentle silence.
The distinct smell of a familiar city.
Houses congregating,
Glowing under a string of twinkling street lamps,
Tucked away on the side of the hill. 

The stone is smooth and slippery:
Under my grasping fingers - elusive.
We sit on stone, under a silent wall of stone,
Mourning the loss of stone,
Of precious stones.

The air leaks into crevices between us,
Encircling us all in an embrace.
The embrace of a widowed mother
Welcoming her displaced children home.
A translucent embrace that binds us as we sit
In maternal warmth.
An embrace disrupted when we stand
And fill the air with the jagged
Sound of ripping resistant cloth and
Aching hearts. Tearing קריעה
On the rocks of the חרבן and on our hopes of גואלה.

 

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