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Flowers on the Bima - Yitro

on Sun, 02/08/2015 - 00:00

The dramatic moment when Moses prepares to climb the mountain to receive the Ten Commandments is set in flowers this week. 
The vase is a shofar shape with blue lines as the echo of the sound of the shofar.  The small flowers are the cloud on top of the mountain and the silver curly willow stands as the thunder and lightening.


Flowers on the Bima - Bo

on Sat, 01/24/2015 - 02:08
The three last  plagues are plagues of different kinds of darkness:
The plague of Locusts “cover the eye of the earth so that it cannot be seen.”  The plague of Darkness is palpable, it is darkness that can be felt, writes Avivah Gottlieb Zornberg in “The Particulars of Rapture, Reflections on Exodus" In the last plague, as Zornberg continues, the darkness is two-fold, the Death of the First Born takes place in the middle of the night and then there is darkness as a kind of blindness to the suffering of the Eqyptians that makes it possible for the Israelites to prepare for leaving at the

Torah on One Foot - The Voice of a Generation 1/15/2015

on Wed, 01/21/2015 - 17:10

Torah On One Foot: An Explanation
There is a story about Hillel and Shammai, two leading Rabbis of the 1st century. They would debate matters of ritual practice, ethics, and theology. One day a potential Jew by choice came before Shammai and said, “Teach me the whole Torah while I stand on one foot.” Shammai chased the student away. The same student went before Hillel and said, “Convert me.” Hillel said, “What is hateful to you, do not to your neighbor. That is the whole Torah; the rest is commentary; go and learn it.” [Talmud, Shabbat]

The Voice of a Generation
 Through the years, there have

Flowers on the Bima - Shemot Exodus 1:1-6:1

on Mon, 01/12/2015 - 03:36


As Exodus begins, so begins the life of Moses, the Biblical Hero who will lead the Israelites out of bondage in Egypt and become a symbol for redemption of all peoples. The life of Moses, as that of famous babies in the Ancient Near East, has the elements of threatened death and survival.  Pharoah demands that every Hebrew baby boy should be thrown in the Nile River, Moses mother hides him for three months, then makes a basket out of Reeds, and sets it afloat on the river.   Moses, the name, means “to draw out from water.”  


The tall glass containers stand as the Nile River, the cane

Flowers on the Bima - Vayigash

on Tue, 01/06/2015 - 02:29

The story of Joseph continues as Joseph’s brothers come to the Egyptian high ranking court official who is Joseph, to ask for sustenance during the drought that Joseph had predicted and stored grain for in order to survive. 

The brothers bow down to Joseph, not recognizing him, just as in Joseph’s dream many years before when the brothers grew so angry at his arrogance they threw him into the pit. 

Before Joseph reveals himself to his brothers he tests them, sending them back with a silver goblet in their sacks.

Flowers for VaYehi

on Tue, 01/06/2015 - 02:19

The traditional Friday night blessing comes from this Torah portion, Vayehi. Jacob on his deathbed, adopts Joseph’s sons Menashe and Ephraim. Jacob crosses his arms placing his right hand over the youngest son Ephraim, in this way putting him first, as Jacob went first from Easu, Isacc went first from the older Ishmael and as Israel the smaller nation comes first in nations.

The bamboo, as the arms of Jacob is crossed, the flowers are the heads of the younger (shorter) Ephraim and the older (taller) Menashe,

B’Shalom, Rosanne



Flowers on the Bima - Chanukah

on Fri, 12/19/2014 - 05:39

“ Chanukah is commemorated with oil. Chanukah celebrates the innerness of the Jewish soul, the essence which permeates and sanctifies every nook and cranny of the Jew’s life.  Chanukah celebrates the secret glow of the spirit, which, rather than confronting the darkness, infiltrates it and transforms it from within.” 

“When set aglow, oil is the master of understatement. Its light does not burst through the door and bulldoze the darkness away; instead, it gently coaxes the gloom to shimmer with a spiritual luminescence.“   from writings by Yanki Tauber

The clay containers stand as the holders

Flowers on the Bima - Vayashev

on Sat, 12/13/2014 - 03:49

The drama of Genesis continues with the sons of Jacob, jealous of seventeen year old Joseph, throwing Joseph in a pit. Midianite merchantmen passed by and pulled Joseph up out of the pit. They sold Joseph to the Ishmaelites for twenty pieces of silver.  
The pot as the pit, the eleven tulips as Joseph’s brothers bowing, just like Joseph’s dream predicted  they would bow to him.  The flower peeking over the edge as Joseph, the greenery supporting the center flower, as the spirit of God with Joseph in the pit.
The ornamental tunic that the brothers took from Joseph when they flung him into

Flowers on the Bima - Vayishlach

on Tue, 12/09/2014 - 20:22

“In the place where [God] had spoken with him”, as a phrase occurs three times in this Torah portion in close sequence, Jacob identifies this place in both fleeing from home and on the way returning to home.  Jacob sets up a pillar marking this place consecrated first by divine speech then as human ritual. Here God vows to Israel and Israel vows to God. This is where Jacob dreamed and returned to vow to God after family struggles and wrestling to finding peace with Easu.

The vase stands as the pillar that Jacob/Israel erects, the flowers inside the clear glass and outside the glass are both

Flowers on the Bima -Vayeitzei

on Thu, 12/04/2014 - 18:14

10 And Jacob went out from Beer-sheba, and went toward Haran.

11 And he lighted upon the place, and tarried there all night, because the sun was set; and he took one of the stones of the place, and put it under his head, and lay down in that place to sleep.

12 And he dreamed, and behold a ladder set up on the earth, and the top of it reached to heaven; and behold the angels of God ascending and descending on it.

The silver ladder of Jacob is placed in vases. The texture on the vases as sleeping on stones.  The mirror the other dimension of dreaming.