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Walking Tour of Congregation Beth Yam

Our House by the Sea: Art, Culture, Symbols, and Values

Congregation Beth Yam is proud of its collection of ritual art and sacred objects that are integrated into the architecture of our synagogue. This beautiful brochure represents another example of building the spiritual community that forms the core of our temple.

Judaism has a long history of artists and crafts people who used their talents to adorn the worship experience in their synagogues and to enhance the ritual objects used in home observances. Abraham Joshua Heschel wrote, “The purpose of ritual art objects is to to inspire a love of God, to enhance our love of performing a mitzvah (religious act), and to add pleasure to fulfilling the act and delight in its completion.” Note how our beautiful Judaic objects enhance the performance of blessings like Shabbat, Havdallah, Hanukkah, other festivals or holidays in the Jewish liturgical calendar, and the most important, the study of Torah, which is equal to them all because it leads to the performance of all of the other mitzvot.

Art supports religion in order to stimulate the Jewish imagination and creativity towards engaging the Eternal One. Our fervent hope is that our community will not only enjoy admiring the artistic designs in our building, but that we will also think about bringing more ritual art into our homes and increase our performance of the many opportunities to practice our faith traditions.

Read the Full Tour (PDF)

Jewish Historical Society of South Carolina

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