Shabbat in Bhagsu
Posted Thu, Jul 29, 2010

We have reached the halfway point in Dharamsala and everything has been amazing! The rain can be a bit much sometimes, but the people here are all great and the daily view of the mountains is breathtaking!

We spent last Shabbat in a town next to McLeod Ganj called Bhagsu, at a place called a Jewish Heart. It is organized through Bnei Akiva in Israel, and an Israeli family comes to India for five months to run the house. There is also a Jewish Heart in the south of India, which is open in the winter.

There are a lot of Israelis in Dharamsala but I was not expecting to see so many at the Jewish Heart for Shabbat dinner on Friday night. And how anyone finds this place is beyond me! We took a rickshaw into town, but to get to the actual Kabbalat Shabbat was a trek on a narrow pathway through a field. It was quite the adventure but the end result was great! We arrived to a room full of Israelis sitting on the floor (in true Indian fashion) all bringing in Shabbat together. The rabbi was only speaking in Hebrew, but said some things in English as he knew that some guests from Canada were going to be in attendance. The service was slightly long, but really nice nonetheless. Everyone was singing and everyone seemed so happy to be there! It was such an experience to be surrounded by so many other Jews, all celebrating Shabbat, halfway across the world. It was a sight I could not have imagined in a million years!


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