Humanistic Judaism was founded as a congregational movement in 1963 by the late Rabbi Sherwin T. Wine, and has emerged as a stream of Judaism that enables people of any ethnic or religious background to cherish Jewish history, culture, and ethics without worshipping or praying to a supernatural being.
נְבָרֵךְ אֶת הָאוֹר
כַּאֲשֶׁר נִקָבֵץ בְּצַותָא
(לְהַדְלִיק נֵרוֹת שֶׁל שַׁבָּת (וְיוֹם טוֹב
בְּאוֹר נְבָרֵךְ אֶת הַחַיִּים
ka-asher nikavets b’tzavta
l’hadlik nerot shel Shabbat is the Sabbath day, the Day of Rest, and is observed from Friday night through Saturday night. Is set aside from the rest of the week both in honor of the fact that God rested on the seventh day after creating the world. On Shabbat, many Jews observe prohibitions from various activities designated as work. Shabbat is traditionally observed with festive meals, wine, challah, prayers, the reading and studying of Torah, conjugal relations, family time, and time with friends. (v’A festival or holiday. Most of the restrictions that apply on Shabbat also apply on a yom tov, with the exception of the prohibitions against cooking and carrying.).
Let us bless the light as we gather together to kindle Sabbath (and festival) candles. With light let us bless life.
As we rest from our work taking care of our narrower mundane concerns, let us move toward those more expansive and transcendent. Let us deepen our selves and renew our world by engaging in labors of love: fostering and transforming family and friendships, community and humanity. As we journey together through life, may such flames as these light our ways and ever remind us to share the warmth of our hearts and the hearths of our homes, the rainbow of our wisdoms and the radiance of our inspirations.
As an affiliate of the Society for Humanistic Judaism (SHJ), Machar is part of the national and international Humanistic Judaism movement. The International Institute for Secular Humanistic Judaism (IISHJ) is the educational arm of our movement, training rabbis and other leaders.