This past Friday, I had a pinched nerve and decided it was best to spend my evening at home. I immediately felt a bit guilty about lighting the Shabbat candles as I was home by default vs. purposefully observing it. After lighting the candles, I read this weeks Torah portion (Shoftim) and fell asleep listening to a Jewish themed podcast. In the midst of this, a few questions came to my mind, which I cannot wait to talk to my Rabbi about.
1. Do I have to wait until sundown to light the candles? (A friend of mine said that I can always bring in Shabbat in early…)
2. What if I already ate?
3. If I am going to bed early and don’t want to burn my house down, how long must the candles be lit for?
4. Should I be saying a prayer every time I eat? If so…which one?
5. Asides from lighting the candles are there other sabbath prayer “musts”?
“The meaning of the Sabbath is to celebrate time rather than space. Six days a week we live under the tyranny of things of space; on the Sabbath we try to become atttuned to holiness in time. It is a day on which we are called upon to share in what is eternal in time, to turn from the results of creation to the mystery of creation; from the world of creation to the creation of the world” —Abraham Joshual Heschel “The Sabbath”.