Free-Floating Hostility

Friday, February 25, 2005

And then we Beat our Helmets into Glockenspiels

Tonight was a special night at the Kol Haddash congregation of Albany, CA. Sherwin Wine, the founder (the founder!) of Secular Humanistic Judaism dropped in to give a talk. Since Rabbi Wine is also Mike's old Hebrew school teacher from Detroit, we schlepped over to Albany to say hi, and to give me my first taste of organized secular humanism (not counting that one memorial service at Ethical Culture).

From what I can tell, Secular Humanism totally rocks. The congregation is full of terrific old people, and Rabbi Wine himself is just the most adorable. He gave a short lecture on the history of Ashkenazic Judaism and I had no idea how little I knew. His style reminded me a little of Peter Awn's (another great teacher). I had a chance to tell the Rabbi how adorable he was at the Oneg, and he was nice enough to tell me how Michael was one of his favorite students of all time. This is something people tell me relatively often, but I never get tired of hearing it. It was all just so cute.

The funniest part of the evening, though, came during the reading, when a congregant informed us that we had beat our swords into ploughshares and our spears into tuning forks. The funny thing is, I think I like it better that way.

That is, rather than pruning hooks, you troglodytes.

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