Rosh HaShanah @ Base
by Avram / MNHTN
Jewish tradition holds that we constitute a minyan - a critical mass of humans in the presence of which ritual worship can happen, halakhically - by 10 men. Nowadays, in certain circles at least, we say 10 adults - men, women, gender-non-conforming. And I used to feel that we needed at least 10 to make davening really good. I felt that we needed a critical mass of voices, of intentionality, of energy, to make worship really feel like it meant something. For me, the most powerful prayer necessitates real mass -- ecstatic mass.
Not so at Base, because Rabbi Avram and Rabbi Jon hold multitudes of ecstatic minyan within them. In their presence and in the minyanim they create (which have many more than 10!) it feels like something substantial is happening -- a harkening back to a time when traditional ritual and open-armed modernism weren't so in conflict. And yet, what they've created is welcoming, and spirited, and joyful in ways I've never experienced before (except in the dream state, and, of course - at Sinai!).
The way the two of them cultivate communal elevation is profoundly unique. And with the added bonus of Baser-diversity around them, it's truly beyond. So whether it's 10 or more, or just sitting with the two of them - substantive prayer is perpetually happening, and everyone is smiling.
Shira Atkins. Baser, Seeker, Groupie.