A Celebration of Love
“The world is not as worthy as the day on which the Song of Songs was given to Israel, for all the writings are holy, but the Song of Songs is the Holy of Holies.”
So said Rabbi Akiva (2nd century Palestine), who understood that The Song of Songs is an allegory between two lovers, God and Israel.
The Kabbalistic tradition teaches that the love in the Song reflects higher events inside God’s metaphysical structure. It is read each year on the Shabbat during Pesach, and we at Temple Israel of Hollywood will celebrate the Song of Songs and our community’s milestone wedding anniversaries this Friday evening, April 6 at 6:30 PM in our Shabbat services.
Shelly Fox, our Director of Music and Cantorial Soloist, with our quartet and pianist Michael Alfera will present some of the most beautiful musical settings for the Song of Songs. Many of the melodies were composed in pre-statehood Palestine.
Our milestone wedding couples (celebrating 5 to 65 years of marriage will read love poetry.
If you live in Los Angeles, come and celebrate with us.
From the Song of Songs
O for your kiss! For your love / More enticing than wine, / For your scent and sweet name -– / For all this they love you. /
Take me away to your room, Like a king to his rooms — / We’ll rejoice there with wine. / No wonder they love you! /
Like a mare among stallions, / You lure, I am held /
Your cheeks framed with braids / your neck traced with shells /
I’ll adorn you with gold / And with silver bells“
How fine / you are, my love, / your eyes / like doves’. /
How fine / are you, my lover, / what joy / we have together. /
How green / our bed of leaves, / our rafters of cedars, / our juniper eaves./
Marcia Falk, The Song of Songs – Love Poems from the Bible (New York & London: Harcourt Brace Javanovich, 1977). Pages 1, 4, 6.
Shabbat shalom and Moadim L’simchah!