Fertility & Mikvah

Waiting for the blessing of children can be heart-wrenching: The waves of hope followed by despair, the toil it takes on a marriage, the challenges with self-image and self-esteem... In responding to this extremely challenging time in life, many woman have found hope in coupling their medical journey with a connection to G-dliness one mitzvah at a time. One of the mitzvot most closely related to the blessing of children is the mitzvah of Family-Sanctity and Mikvah. With this in mind, many woman who are hoping for children try to: ▪ Review the laws of Family-Sanctity scrupulously, ▪ Grow in their Mikvah observance by paying attention to the details of the laws, ▪ Arrange a Mikvah refresher-

How does G-d Judge Us?

I was waiting in line to pay. In front of me was a man with his four kids. The kids were loud, whiny and wild. Now I have kids of my own and I know how kids can be, but this was really out of control. What a foolish man, I thought to myself, and what a disgrace. Why’d you bring all your kids with you if they’re bound to be such a disturbance? As if reading my thoughts he turned to me with a sigh: “It’s a difficult time for us… Their Mom just passed away….” I couldn’t control my tears and though my previous thoughts had thankfully remained unspoken, I was hot with shame. We all judge others and our judgements are often harsh. We judge our neighbours. We judge our kids' teachers. We judge ou

The Tattoo

By Adela Renna Over the past fifteen years of moving all over the world with my American diplomat husband, our career has taken us often to places where life is not easy. Whether in Slovakia, The Gambia, Armenia, Congo or Botswana, the most challenging mitzvah to keep has been Taharat-Hamishpacha (Family Sanctity). I feel very fortunate now to be able to peruse the Great Park Synagogue Mikvah, which is without doubt, the most beautiful and comfortable mikvah facility I have ever used. However, in the past, I have dipped into the raging Atlantic on dark nights and have braved ice cold water in a mountain lake or in old mikvaot where the heating systems were malfunctioning. I have spent money

Greeting the New Year with Mikvah

'I feel like I am entering a new chapter in my life', expressed Sarah, as she began counting the days towards her Mikvah immersion. Sarah has been married for over 15 years and has never before immersed in a Mikvah. Moved to grow her relationship with Hashem and add a G-dly dimension to her life, Sarah approached us and asked if she could meet to learn and fulfill this mitzvah in honour of the approaching High Holidays. Sarah is one of many women who have expressed a desire to proactively prepare for the Rosh Hashana by doing an extra mitzvah to connect with G-d. Woman after woman has approached us to come learn one-on-one about the mitzvah of Family Sanctity with the intention of immersing

What do women in our community say about mikvah?

What do women in our community say about mikvah? Excerpts from interviews – view the clips at www.greatmikvah.com “I didn’t go the mikvah to make an exchange or to bargain with G-d. I had a flame that I wanted to rekindle. The atmosphere at the mikvah was calm and beautiful. I felt very much a peace. The lady in attendance was kind, gentle and discreet. It was private, it was tranquil and when I left the mikvah I think I felt a lot better for it…” - Hillary Lubner “In addition to the G-dliness and spirituality inherent in the act of going to the mikvah, for me there are 2 really profound benefits of going to mikvah each month as a married woman. Firstly, the mikvah provides a carved out time

Teaching Tool Reaching Brazil

Women across the globe are introduced to the beauty and practical details of mikvah with the Great Park “A Guide to Teaching Mikvah” manual and PowerPoint presentation. This year, the teaching-tool reached even more women with the translation of the presentation into Portuguese. “There is so much ignorance and many misconceptions about mikvah,” expressed one learner, “but if women only takes the time to find a mikvah mentor – someone who can explain the why/what/how’s of mikvah coherently and sensitively – then they will appreciate the gift of mikvah and how much spirituality it can bring into their lives.” The “A Guide to teaching Mikvah” presentation assists mikvah teachers and teachers-to

Mom-&-Daughter Mikvah Tour

Why do young bat-mitzvah girls from across the city visit our mikvah every year? Not for immersion, nor for a talk on the intricate details of Family-Sanctity. Rather, these girls participate in a unique program for Moms and daughters - a session of empowerment discussing the extraordinary role of the Jewish woman. And what better place to celebrate Jewish women than in a building built specifically for them: The mikvah. While many assume that the shul is the most important structure in Jewish life today, there are other structures that are more essential to Jewish living. A shul is indeed a place to connect with Hashem, develop a sense of community, and learn and be inspired to grow. But it

Who is my spouse?

There are many explanations. One of the deeper messages of the veil: The veil signifies that there’s more to life than what we see on the surface. The bride and groom are telling each other: “I am not marrying you just for your beautiful face or for your outer qualities. I am marrying you for something much deeper than that. I care about who YOU really are. It’s not just about what we see on the outside. The veil symbolizes that there is so much more than what we see on the surface….” This holiday ask yourself: ▪ What are the inner qualities of my spouse? ▪ Do I express my gratitude for these inner qualities? ▪ What can I do to focus more on my own inner qualities? #Relationships

Slow Down

It’s holiday time. For some this hails stressful days of unstructured time. For others this may be an opportunity to travel and immerse in G-d’s miraculous world. For everyone it ought to be a time to slow-down and find even a day or two to re-energize. Consider, this holiday, the importance of mindfulness. Take some time – even a few minutes a day – to cultivate mindfulness and to find ways to incorporate mindful living into the day-to-day of the year ahead. Here’s an excerpt of what Frumma Rosenberg-Gottlieb has to say on the matter: (Full article here.) ...The fast pace of modern living is prompted by the desire—and the ability, thanks to technology—to be more efficient and effective. B

© 2016 by Goldie Simpson

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