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MyZuzah Wants To Bless Every Jewish Home in the World

Our homes are our castles–even more than that– our homes are our sanctuaries and the foundation of our Jewish lives.

Some of our fondest childhood memories take place in the home…lighting the Hanukkah menorah and displaying it in the window, gathering together for Shabbat, building a sukkah in our backyard are just a few ways build our Jewish identity for generations to come.

Since the coronavirus hit last Spring, we have been forced to social distance and retreat to the place we call home. It turns out that this change in our fast paced routine, rushing around all the time, has forced us to slow down and focus on what’s most important. Our home is where we should feel welcome, familiar, loved, and protected.  And now with the high holidays around the corner, we find ourselves still sheltering in place and the home is our safety zone. Blessing our home is a timeless Jewish tradition, and if you don’t have a mezuzah already, now is the time to get one for yourself or someone you love. In fact, it was two years ago on Rosh Hashanah that my son hung his first mezuzah with the gold Hebrew letter Shin, or Almighty, in his apartment, the same kind that adorned his home located in Jerusalem’s Emek Refaim neighborhood.

When my family visited him Israel, I took pictures of so many mezuzahs (or mezuzot for plural) marking doorposts throughout the neighborhoods. The mezuzahs came in all styles, decorations, and colors, from simple wood and shiny brass, to ornate hand-painted pieces of glass, all pieces of art containing the same Torah scroll inside.

And now you can get a beautiful free mezuzah right here and now at MyZuzah, a start-up organization that seeks to put a kosher, fair trade mezuzah on the front door of every Jewish home across the globe. This mezuzah has a $80 value, but it’s free for signing up or donations are welcome. Each mezuzah takes time, energy and resources to create. The scroll is hand-written by an expert scribe, making the mezuzah ethical and kosher, beautifying this unique touchpoint that unites us.

So far, MyZuzah has impacted 13 countries, 67 cities, and nearly 2,500 Jewish homes. A touchpoint that unites all Jews, the mezuzah’s mystical power has connected and protected the Jewish people since the Exodus. Having a mezuzah is a mitzvah of biblical origin, “And you shall inscribe them on the doorposts (mezuzot) of our house and on your gates” (Deuteronomy 6:9, 11:20).

Inside the mezuzah is a handwritten parchment, or klaf, containing these verses of the Torah: “The words that I shall tell you this day”: that you shall love your God, believe only in Him, keep His commandments, and pass all of this on to your children. The tiny scroll also has the Shema Yisrael, beginning with the phrase: “Hear, O Israel, the Lord our God, the Lord is One.”

Mezuzah actually refers as well to the case or container in which the parchment is enclosed. A mezuzah serves two functions: Every time you enter or leave, the mezuzah reminds you that you have a covenant with God; second, the mezuzah serves as a symbol to everyone else that this particular dwelling is constituted as a Jewish household, operating by a special set of rules, rituals, and beliefs.

A mezuzah is a sign and reminder of the Covenant, of our love and commitment and our willingness to create a Jewish household.

If you need help hanging your mezuzah, no worries, MyZuzah can hook you up with a Rabbi from Aish St. Louis (or anywhere you live), who will lead you every step of the way and offer guidance on the proper way to affix and dedicate the mezuzah. By following these steps to hang your mezuzah, you will be the link to bless your home and those who dwell inside.

The only thing they ask—send a selfie with your new mezuzah so they can keep track of the project going on around the world and this will assure that someone else will receive one, too!

Go to MyZuzah to learn more and make your house a home, a Jewish home.  And to learn more about mezuzahs, go here!