Jun 30, 2013

That Shabbos Feeling

I've been thinking about things that make it feel not 'Shabbosdik' for me, that don't have an actual halachic or minhag-based connection to Shabbos.

For example, we had a guest for Shabbos who wanted the hall light to be on.  I never have that hall light on, on Shabbos.  Seeing it on, gave me a "weekday feeling."  Likewise, one Shabbos when we were home but had a simcha we were attending elsewhere, and I did not use the blech, it was odd to see the stovetop.

So for me, a routine in how my home is physically set up on Shabbos, makes a difference.  I don't know if they sell them anymore, but many years ago, Bubbies had toaster oven covers, blender covers, phone covers, that they used for Shabbos.

I think many people feel that way about food (as in this post: here about Pesach food ).  There are those who make the identical Shabbos menus week after week, because in their communities these traditions are important.  For the rest of us, we have all kinds of dishes that nobody in our past history ever ate on Shabbos or even on weekdays.  And yet, there are certain dishes that, to me, are weekday fare.  They don't seem 'Shabbosdik' to me (see here about whole wheat challa). 

I shut the ringer on my phone every erev Shabbos.  If I am in someone's home on Shabbos (or Yom Tov) and hear their phone ring or their answering machine, I find it a jarring, unpleasant intrusion into the aura of Shabbos.  Similarly, but to a lesser degree, when I hear loud music playing outside, usually from a car driving by or waiting at a light, it's an encroachment on my Shabbos space.

Walking in a non-Jewish area where stores are open would be another example. 

And one more - I asked someone what makes it not Shabbosdik for them.  The answer pertained to Rosh Hashana: seeing someone reading a novel Rosh Hashana night.

Do you have any examples?


  1. There are places that sell appliance covers. Some women can't walk in Shabbos shoes so they wear weekday shoes and even sneakers, on Shabbos. An Israeli shoe company called Moran Shoes, sells old lady bunion shoes in Shabbosdik styles. They combine comfort, safety, and elegance. Clothing that to some women are Shabbosdik, others would not wear in public at all such as tee shirts, even those with long sleeves. I see some women wearing them in the summer on Shabbos and wonder why they think that tee shirts are for Shabbos.

  2. A lot of these sensitivities depend upon what one saw in one's own home growing up.

    I think in modern times, all electronic devices should be out of the way. If a computer is in the main living area (which it should be), it should be covered with a sheet, or the like, for Shabbos. All cellphones and similar devices should be turned off and put out of sight.

    It's also important to take care not to do Shabbos'dik things on weekdays, e.g., if a balabosteh has a nice dress that she bought l'chovod Shabbos, she shouldn't wear it stam on a weekday (unless for a special occasion). Then on Shabbos it's special.