Gallery curated by Jessica Rosenberg.
This is a gallery of Jewish ritual materials that are anti or non-Zionist, or center Palestine solidarity organizing. These are rituals by and for people who want their Jewish ritual lives and Palestine solidarity work integrated. All of the rituals in this gallery are amazing ways to explore the centuries-rich traditions of Jewish holidays in politically relevant ways. When I’m creating Jewish ritual, I use this gallery as my toolbox and I like to pull from, mix and match, create anew with every group that is gathered. Right now the earliest piece in the gallery is from 2006. I know that there are countless pdf’s buried in your computer, photocopies, and mimeographs of typed, hand-written, drawn, cut and pasted rituals galore buried in your closet. My dream is that this can be a jumping off point and folks will scan and share more examples,and we can add depth and breadth to this gallery.
I’m excited to see what the next 10 years (and beyond!) of radical Jewish ritual materials look like, excited to be part of co-creating these with the inspiring and creative people in these movements, and living into a Judaism and Jewish community that long outlives the occupation of and injustice in Palestine.
About the gallery curator:
In 2010, I found anti-Zionist Jews to make community and take part in Jewish ritual with. Finding these people pushed me out of fear and frozeness, and into active commitment to Palestine solidarity organizing. In my five short years of Palestine solidarity organizing and anti-Zionist Jewish communal life, I’ve seen desire for Jewish ritual wax and wane in myself, in the people I organize with, and in the people I make ritual with. Complicated feelings about how to do it abound. I cherish conversations with friends and comrades about how to make anti- and non-Zionist ritual, and how and when to share it meaningfully and effectively. For the last three years, I’ve been blessed to be a part of the JVP Rabbinical Council, a collective of rabbis, rabbinical students, and cantors who take action to support justice in Israel/Palestine.
At this point in my ritual practice, I rarely want to do an entire seder or service where every prayer or ritual moment is explicitly tied to Palestine. As friends and comrades Irit & Nava have pointed out, that starts to feel to me like centering Israel/Palestine, and as an anti-Zionist, diaspora-centered Jew, I don’t want to make my Jewish practice contingent on the occupation of Palestine. I want to center what is sacred in my life and my community. I want to make ritual about all the interconnected struggles for justice I’m a part of, from where I live in Philadelphia to what I’m implicated in across this country and around the world. If all of our Jewish ritual life is centered around the occupation and injustice in Israel/Palestine, how are we envisioning and building a Jewish community and Judaism that is separate from Zionism and that we can practice after the occupation ends? Simultaneously, at this point in time, I don’t feel that I have the luxury of a Jewish ritual life that doesn’t engage with Israel/Palestine. I feel that anti-Zionist ritual that focuses on Israel/Palestine is an important piece of my work. Ritual is a powerful tool of communal and ancestral connections, emotional transformation, empowerment, and resistance. While oppression is being perpetrated in the name of Jewish safety, I will use anti-Zionist Jewish ritual as a tool to both publicly challenge the false construct of a politically monolithic Jewish community, and to be personally uplifted, motivated and healed.