Saturday, January 23, 2016

Personal Phemonology

I went to the Saturday Morning service at Temple De Hirsch-Sinai on Capitol Hill this morning.

And I wondered why.

I have been attending the Saturday morning service whenever I could since October, after the High Holidays.  Much easier than attempting 6pm Friday evening.

Just to show my face, be part of the community, maybe to get to know the rabbis.  Part of ethnography; being present in the community that you are studying.

I did go down to Capitol Hill and attend, past the armed guard, to the small group who gather there, many women, some by themselves like myself.  The rabbis hold a torah study downstairs the hour previous with excellent bagels.  I’ve gone for parts of it; I always enjoy all that commentary.  The chapel feels pretty empty until that group filters in.

Why did I come?  I’d already met the rabbis.  I came last week.  I’m not that interested in being more observant…

I can’t directly experience the Old Sanctuary.  But there are some clues even now, particularly in this room.

My research continues to loop back into phenomenology.  How people experience things.  Casey’s theory of place.  Lived experiences.  And that includes me.  How I experience my contact with the Old Sanctuary fills out the story.

So I should  be journaling how I feel.  What strikes me every time.  What do I notice, how do I feel, how does it all fit together. Acknowledging other’s reasons for being there different than mine.

As always, no time like the present.

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