Spiritual Surroundings

This morning, in honor of Shabbat, all of Camp had the luxury of a sleep-in breakfast with bagels, cream cheese, fruit and assorted special Shabbat cereals. Soon after, campers gathered for a Torah service in our majestic outdoor sanctuary, Makom Shalom, which means Place of Peace. The service is a mix of Hebrew and English prayers that bring the fourth rung of Tawonga’s Mission to life: spirituality and positive Jewish identity.

This Shabbat and every Shabbat this summer we will read from the ancient pages of Tawonga’s historic Torah, which was rescued after World War II. (You can read more about our Torah here.) We are in touch with something powerful, nearly magical, when reading from the spiritual tree of life while surrounded by actual trees of life.

We sanctify this experience when we acknowledge that at the same time that Moses received the Torah at Sinai, Native American Miwuk people were sitting around the same granite stones which surround our outdoor bimah. Reading from this Torah, in this sacred space, connects our community to both of these legacies. 

The rest of the day included Shabbat programming, BBQ dinner, and a Camp-wide campfire and Havdalah service to close out this beautiful Shabbat.