2858 N.E. Sandy Blvd.
Seeking marital intimacy? A rabbi has your answer
‘Sex is just a thing’; intimacy makes two people one
Mikvah Shoshanah, Portland’s Women’s Mikvah exists to keep the spark alive in Jewish marriages. An exaggeration? Not according to the world-renowned rabbi coming to town to speak about sexual intimacy and how to achieve it.
Mikvah Shoshana, a non-profit, is bringing Rabbi Manis Friedman from New Jersey to present his ideas at three different local venues. (Friedman’s name might ring a bell, as he was Bob Dylan’s rabbi.) Friedman combines ancient wisdom and modern wit in his talks all over the world. He asks, and answers the question, After all the pop-psychology and therapy, what is it that really holds relationships together?
Friedman will also present “What’s Love Got to Do With It?”: March 3, at Salem’s Chabad Center for Jewish Life, 6:30 pm, 1370 Crowley Ave. S., Salem. On March 4, the rabbi speaks about “Getting to Like the People you Love,” at Chabad Jewish Center of Hillsboro, 8 p.m., 965 SW Brookwood Ave.
Tickets start at $10, and are available at www.Portlandswomensmikvah.eventbrite.com.
A little background: Mikvah is a bath filled with natural, flowing water reserved for Jewish ritual purifications. The mikvah is an ancient Jewish tradition still practiced in the modern world, and Portland is home to two mikva’ot (the plural of mikvah).
Mikvah Shoshana’s mission is unique: To educate women from across the Jewish community about and inspire them to observe the monthly mitzvah (good deed) of family purity. It requires two weeks without physical contact followed by two weeks of reentering holy, loving, mindful intimacy. That practice — in Hebrew taharat mishpachah — appears in the Torah and is considered central to maintaining — or reintroducing — marital harmony and intimacy.
Friedman says there is a difference between sex and intimacy. “Sex is just a thing,” and two people can engage in and enjoy it but they’re not really connecting to each other, he said. But, follow the monthly rhythm of separating for two weeks and then reuniting for two weeks, and “The objective of becoming one is fulfilled.” And his talks include other exciting paths to intimacy, too.
Friedman’s first book, Doesn’t Anyone Blush Anymore? (Harper San Francisco, 1990) now is in its fourth printing. He will be signing and selling Blush at his appearances; Dylan himself was a huge fan of this publication.
About Mikvah Shoshanah — Portland’s Women’s Mikvah
Mikvah Shoshana, Portland’s Women’s Mikvah’s mission is to promote taharat hamishpacha, Hebrew for family purity. The practice requires women to immerse in mikvah once monthly in order to re-enter the holy, loving, mindful intimacy and mitzvah of the marital relationship. Opened in March 1998, Mikvah Shoshana educates and inspires women from across the entire Jewish community in the observance of this beautiful mitzvah.