Saturday, January 7, 2012

Shabbat at Kibbutz Chukuk

          The last couple of days we’ve been at Kibbutz Chukuk in the Galil (Northern part of Israel) around the Sea of Galilee. Yesterday we drove around to some truly breathtaking views of the Golan Heights, mountains, valleys, and fresh cold air. After, we walked around the Artist’s Colony in Tzfat, had some of the best falafel we’ve ever eaten, and learned about kabbalah and Jewish mysticism.
I’ve really never felt more connected to Judaism than I did than during our group discussions today at the Kibbutz. While each person here with us, students, Israeli soldiers, and our incredible staff and tour guides, have been affected differently throughout their lives because of our Jewish heritage, today I felt an incredible sense of belonging to the Jewish nation of Israel. 
I went to Hebrew school and had a Bar Mitzvah, but the years of my Jewish education have begun to take on new meaning for me.  We sat out on the lawn (January in Israel beats January in Boston!) and came to a consensus about what we consider to be the most important Jewish values. We ended our discussion with the idea that one of the most important Jewish values is that we as Jews take the initiative to discuss and find meaning in our lives as Jews. A fun, relaxing day (partially) outdoors throwing around some balls, with deep, thought-provoking discussion! Hang Tufts, Tufts’ parents, we’re having a great time and you’ll see us all soon enough! ;-) 
-Gabe Beckerman 

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