Joint cultural events on Shabbat for religious and secular Jews in order to transform Shabbat into something that brings people together within the community.
Shabbati in Hebrew means both “Shabbat-like,” (in the sense of a feeling and atmosphere of Shabbat, which is different from that of the other six days of the week) and “my Shabbat” (expressive of a sense of ownership and belonging). The Shabbati Project was established two years ago by a group of young Jerusalemites – religious, secular, traditional, and Haredi – with the goal of offering a new vision for Shabbat in Jerusalem. The initiators identified the need for cultural events on Shabbat that would be comfortable for all sectors and would transform Shabbat from a source of conflict and division to something that brings everyone together and creates connections between people and communities
How does it work?
Shabbati takes place in neighborhoods throughout the city, either on Friday night, Saturday morning or Saturday afternoon. The activities are varied and each event is adapted to the interests of the particular neighborhood and community in which they are held. Organizers are given a free-hand with the only rule that there are no activities that require transgressing the Sabbath. Each event is open to all who want to participate and care is taken that everyone feels welcome, comfortable, and able to enjoy the interaction and rest. There is usually a central lecture or talk alongside other activities such as board games, newspapers, games for kids, and Yoga classes.
Each event is comprised of three elements:
Encounters: A space/platform for residents to meet each other, a kind of “neighborhood living room”
Culture: A diverse program of Shabbat-friendly talks, lectures, spoken word performances, yoga classes, and stand up, amongst others
Leisure: Comfortable sitting areas with board games, newspapers, books and light refreshments
The Shabati Project works in partnership and supports the Shabbat UNPLUGGED initiative of the Shaarim Association' and the 'Avihai Foundation'