Tzfat | Shorashim - Israel with Israelis
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Hebrew word of the day: Ad Matai which translates to "until when"

After our final meal at Kibbutz Afiq, we boarded the bus and headed to the holy city of Tzfat. Tzfat is one of four holy cities in Israel alongside Hebron, Tiberius, and Jerusalem. Tzfat is a beautiful city full of lively art and Jewish mysticism called Kabbalah.

I felt that it connected me to a part of Judaism that I only knew a little bit about before on the spiritual side. I really liked when he mentioned that nothing is a coincidence. When he mentioned that I realized how true that was and how it connected in my life. I believe that we all meant to be there and I was there for a purposeful reason.

Combining Tsfat and Tel Aviv in one day made for an interesting contrast between old and new.

"There’s so much to write about that it’s almost impossible to know where to start, or how to say it all."

What was your favorite part of the day and why? 
Speaking with Raecheli, an Ethiopian Jewish immigrant who lived in the Youth Village, and hearing her story. Speaking with her helped us appreciate how important Israel is to so many different people. 

Today was a very enjoyable day up in the north of Israel. It is tough to properly describe how amazing this sight was and how in awe our group was of this view. In all, Birthright has been unbelievably fun so far and my only expectation is that it will only get better!

Our first stop in Tel-Aviv was Independence Hall, the location of Israel's independence signing in 1948. We watched a brief film describing the context of the signing as well as its implications for Israel. We then joined another birthright group, as we gathered in the room where the signing took place to listen to a speaker elaborate on the knowledge we gained from the earlier video. I was taken aback by the passion the speaker had for Israel, and it was apparent she was an expert on all things Israel. The session ended with us listening to the iteration of the Israeli national anthem that was sang during the signing in 1948; this was truly a moving experience for the group.

My favorite part of the day was seeing Israeli children going on a field trip by climbing down Mt. Arbel. In the US, our field trips were mostly restricted to museum field trips were being sedentary was usually a given, but here, the kids are given an ability to pursue at active lifestyle, which research shows that it is equally as important as classroom time! I also loved talking with them because they were so excited to meet American kids like us on Birthright.

Led by one of our Israeli participants, Ariel, we were taken to the place of his Bar Mitzvah at the sacred synagogue. After the synagogue, Or lead us to Abraham a Michigan born citizen currently residing Tsfat where he paints his mystical arts, inspired by teachings of the Kabbalah. 

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