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Graceful Bar Mitzvah / Graceful Masculinity: Nitzavim

Part of a periodic Torah series on graceful masculinity and Jewish values. רְאֵה נָתַתִּי לְפָנֶיךָ הַיּוֹם, אֶת-הַחַיִּים וְאֶת-הַטּוֹב, וְאֶת-הַמָּוֶת, וְאֶת-הָרָע. See, I set before you this day, life and goodness, death and evil. (Deuteronomy 30:15)   The word “HaYom” is famously understood to be an allusion to Rosh Hashanah – the day that humans were […]

Graceful Inheritance / Graceful Masculinity: Ki Tavo

Part of a periodic Torah series on graceful masculinity and Jewish values.  וְהָיָה, כִּי–תָבוֹא אֶל–הָאָרֶץ, אֲשֶׁר יְהוָה אֱלֹהֶיךָ, נֹתֵן לְךָ נַחֲלָה; וִירִשְׁתָּהּ, וְיָשַׁבְתָּ בָּהּ. It will be when you enter the land that Hashem, your G-d, gives you as an inheritance, and you take possession, and dwell, in it. Deuteronomy 26:1 Like the Israelites in […]

What our prayer shawls carry

Right now there are 15 tallitot in my house. How did I get here? One tallit is my son’s bar mitzvah tallit; one is the “girly” tallit I sometimes wear; one is the giant wool tallit I sometimes wrap couples in under the chuppah.  The stories these tallitot tell are clear and known.  Ok, what […]

Graceful Masculinity / Graceful Building: Ki Seitzei

כִּי תִבְנֶה בַּיִת חָדָשׁ, וְעָשִׂיתָ מַעֲקֶה לְגַגֶּךָ; וְלֹא-תָשִׂים דָּמִים בְּבֵיתֶךָ, כִּי-יִפֹּל הַנֹּפֵל מִמֶּנּוּ. If you will build a new house, you shall make a fence for your roof, so that you will not place blood in your house if one who falls, falls from it. (Deuteronomy 22:8)   Our bodies house our souls and this […]

A week of building with Bayit

Top row: T-shirts courtesy of Steve Silbert; the Bayit Board meets onsite and online; kayaking on the lake. Bottom row: morning davening gear, and our morning davening spot.   When we gather at our VRBO, the first thing we do is kasher the kitchen. We do a massive grocery run at a nearby kosher market […]

Gates, Open and Closing – New Liturgy / Poetry / Art for Selichot and Ne’ilah

These offerings (new from Bayit’s Liturgical Arts Working Group) are bookends for the Days of Awe. Here are poems, prayers, and artworks for Selichot and for Ne’ilah, the near and far thresholds of this holy season. May they help these holidays lift our spirits and open our hearts. And may the new year bring blessing […]

What Is Builders Blog?

Builders Blog is a go-to portal for Jewish ritual and spiritual innovation, design thought, and practical tools for Jewish life. We share ideas in progress, reflections on what didn’t work and why, and tools for cultivating spiritual innovation. We aim to lift up teachings, spark ideas, share practices, and try out new and renewed ways […]