Lokshen Kugel means "noodle pudding" in Yiddish. It originated in eastern Europe where the Jewish community spoke that language. This item falls into the category of "grandma's dishes."
My little guy and his siblings, like so many children, are full of questions about God. All day, every day, their inquiring minds want to know: Where is God? Why is God? Who is God? And the most oft-heard question of all: Is God a boy or a girl? Or neither? Or both?
On a recent Friday night during services, after the ark doors were closed following Aleinu, my two-year-old daughter burst out screaming and had to be carried from the room. When I asked my wife later what had happened, she explained that Nava had wanted the Torah to come out, but it had not. My daughter loves Torah – in that absolute and forceful toddler love kind of way.
Given to us in that fateful moment at Sinai, Torah is our blueprint for sacred living – in relationship with God, the Jewish people, and all humankind. At Shavuot, we celebrate this gift by studying late into the night, eating sweets and dairy foods to symbolize the sweetness and lifeblood that Torah is for us, and making our own offerings to God: committing our children to the study of Torah and the embrace of Jewish tradition via confirmation.
In his greatest hour, Moses showed us we have nothing to fear. The tablets of God were broken, but we remain intact. Our task, too late for my patient but perhaps not too late for us, is to break the spell of Sinai. Only then, following Moses’ example, can we begin the real work of hammering out what constitutes a moral society.
On Shavuot, as we celebrate receiving the Torah at Mt. Sinai, we also celebrate the beginning of the harvest and the connection between the earth, God and us. Receiving the Torah at Mount Sinai includes accepting the teachings and values of the Torah that guide our daily lives.