One Day You Will Call Me High Priestess Yenta

Last week on Tablet, Jeremy Gillick wrote a piece about the kohanot, or Hebrew Priestess movement:

Kohenet is part of a growing, grassroots Jewish movement to reclaim the divine feminine—female aspects of God represented in Jewish texts—and reintroduce earth-based traditions to Jewish spiritual seekers.

Yes, please.

This notion of reinventing tradition to create something new and based in (what I, and apparently others, believe is) the original worship of our Creator fills me with a vim and vigor to jolt me out of an afternoon Yom Kippur service nap. While I don’t know if I’d ever call myself a Jewitch (though I am intrigued by the term and could be convinced, especially if broom-riding is part of the deal), bringing back the Goddess to shul is something I can get behind.

Obviously, pitching such an idea to mainstream Jews has a looooong way to go, even though Rabbi Gershon Winkler, a former ultra-Orthodox rabbi, argues that Judaism was originally closer to Native American Shamanism than to Christianity–’cause you’re always gonna have your yeshiva-stalwart Rabbi Moshe Tendlers, who snort that earth-based Jews are “perverts” who should be ignored.

Anyone want to meet me in the woods for Rosh Hashanah?

Even if you’re not ready to break out the Stevie Nicks goddesswear just yet, read the article and let me know your thoughts.

2 thoughts on “One Day You Will Call Me High Priestess Yenta

  1. Meh. Having grown up with a neo-pagan Goddess-worshipping mother, I’m not that impressed by the whole kohenet thing. Sounds like women who want to dress up and play priestess out in the woods. Not my thing, but whatever.

  2. Ha ha ha, Tzipporah, sure, I see your point. What really fascinates me here is the reclamation of the ancient Temple rituals by women, thereby validating our place not only in Jewish worship practices, but in the core spirituality that’s hidden within those practices. Swirly skirts optional 😉

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