On Sunday evening, dissatisfied with the institutionalized offerings, noting that the only women who were allowed to speak or sing were an elite group, status acquired via marriage or birth. Like Ferenczzi, I am a democrat.
So, inspired by the song, "Eli, Eli" I took to the Promenade. Upper East Side. E. 86Street entrance. I put up a notice on "NEXT DOOR." I sent out a chain e-mail to my associates. Radio silence. Resistance--"but all the shuls are doing something." Yes, but I want to be outside. Facing the East River.
Secondly, the shuls want passivity. They have the expert singers (and they are always male). They have the playlist (religious, not Zionist). Neither democratic nor active. The trend is that even if the congregation sings---it is the males. Females usually don't sing in front of males or dance.
I am saying that part of healing is an active participation.
So off I go. All by myself. The first night, aided by YOUTUBE, I sang "Eli, Eli." I attempted to sing "Yerushalim ha Zahar," but couldn't find a good version on YOUTUBE. They all ended after 10 seconds and synced into another version. So I decided on Kiley's version of IMPOSSIBLE DREAM.
Initially, I advertised 7PM. But tis quite dark and ill lit. There were many dog-walkers, so it was not unsafe, but still, it was quite lonely.
Tonight, I decided to go out at 6PM. Watch the sunset, feel the wind and smell the river. Off I went. More company--joggers, dogwalkers. I announced to the East River: "We pray for peace. We pray for wisdom." And we sing. The first song was IMAGINE. Then, ELI, ELI. Then, the Rogers and Hammerstein version of IMPOSSIBLE. Or is it ITS POSSIBLE?
At the end, darkness envelops all. I said to the wind, to the sea, to the darkening sky, "We pray for peace. We pray for wisdom." We return tomorrow. Horton, I am here. Did you hear?