Art Gallery and Education Center, Youth

The Disappearing Mikveh

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by Leeza Negelev, Associate Director of Education What makes any space Jewish in particular? Imagine an abandoned synagogue in Europe, now preserved for travelers and tourists. Is it a Jewish space if it isn’t being used for tefillah (prayer)? What about a ritual object? Is a kiddush cup really a kiddush cup if it is […]

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Art Gallery and Education Center, Youth

High School Seniors Talk Mikveh

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by Mike Fishbein Temple Israel of Boston and The Tent: A Jewish Learning Community for Greater Boston Teens at Temple Israel of Boston have brought our last four 12th grade classes to Mayyim Hayyim. The program occurs just before their graduation from our teen education community. These visits have been many things: highly successful educational […]

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Art Gallery and Education Center, Jewish Community

An Anonymous Affirmation

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At Mayyim Hayyim, we often receive feedback from visitors around the world who participated in one of our many education programs with Associate Director of Education, Leeza Negelev. We are pleased to share these thoughtful reflections from an Israeli teen with the Bronfman Fellowship. Dear Leeza, On behalf of myself and all of the Bronfman fellows, […]

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Art Gallery and Education Center, Potpourri

7 Kavanot: A Deep Dive

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by Leeza Negelev, Associate Director of Education Mayyim Hayyim’s Seven Kavanot for Mikveh Preparation lists seven practical steps for the removal of chatzizot (barriers) that might come between the water and me. This document also offers seven intentions (kavanot) that focus my mind on removing these barriers with loving attention and respect for my body. Having used the […]

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Art Gallery and Education Center, Jewish Community

The Tide has Shifted

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by Anita Diamant, Founding President I have to tell you a story. At the recent Reform Movement Biennial, more than 50 participants from all over the world took a field trip to Mayyim Hayyim. The response was — rapturous. Mikveh and Education Director, Lisa Berman, asked those 50 URJ guests how many had never been […]

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Unpacking Niddah

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by Rabbi Miriam-Simma Walfish Niddah is the practice of abstaining from sexual intimacy around the time of menstruation. When contemplating the rabbinic laws surrounding menstruation, it can be easy to wonder: Why is there a whole area of Jewish law devoted to the intricacies of determining the beginning and end of women’s menstrual cycles? At times, […]

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Lessons from Beyond the Huppah: An In-Depth Review

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Originally posted on January 18, 2017 by Cantor Sarah Bolts and Michael Chernicoff Sarah: I honestly didn’t know what to expect from a pre-marriage class. I grew up in the Orthodox community, where pre-marriage classes came in the form of “kallah (bride) classes” in which a bride would learn about the laws of niddah (regular separation […]

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Journey to the Mikveh

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by Ev Bastow In August of this year, I had the unique experience of visiting Mayyim Hayyim. I cannot talk about that encounter without telling about the life events that led up to that memorable day. I was born and raised in New York City and grew up in a mostly unobservant home. Except for […]

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