Finding Meaning

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Yesterday, our Galil campers (rising 8th grader) shared their thoughts about finding the meaning at camp during Saturday morning services. 

By Sophie, Maya, Sara and Chloe
Throughout these past few days, we have started to realize how little time we have left this summer. From this, we started to cherish every little moment we have here together, because before we know it, it will soon be over. By taking in each little moment, we began to realize that the true meaning of camp isn’t just banging on tables and light night porch talks. We’re going to take you through a typical day at camp and what it’s like for us. Imagine this is your schedule; 1st period – Jlife. 2nd period – the wall, adventure (etgarim). 3rd period – Chai lights. 4th period – rec athletics. In Jlife these past few days it has been more than just listening to faculty talk. We have been participating and taking in the lessons our faculty members teach us. Climbing the wall is more than climbing for the fun of it, it’s taking in the beautiful view once you reach the top. Cooking in Chai lights is not just a chance to get food, it’s an opportunity to bond with your bunk before we are all mixed with the other bunks next year in K’Far. Rec athletics gives you the freedom of choosing an activity on your own. A chance to be independent and not always going with your friends. As we pray silently, we encourage you, to think about the upcoming week, and take everything in, because before you know it summer will be over. 

By Chloe, Ava and Shayna
Dear our Galil summer,
You’ve given us our best friends. Through bunk-o, fort building competitions, and countless kef b’amayims (water fun), through happy moments and sad moments we have become closer. We are only just beginning to appreciate the meaning of these moments. As we think about our junior camp experience coming to a close, we are so grateful for our memories. Like using all of my Hershey money to buy a stuffed llama or always breaking my mirror, to falling off the dutch springs slide or even in the middle of the bunk, and dancing like crazy in front of the entire camp. Thank you Galil 2019, K’Far doesn’t know what’s coming its way!!

By Wang, Justin and Ari
The meaning of Shabbat to me is togetherness. As a camp, Shabbat brings us all together in one sacred place where we can pray freely and happily. We are surrounded by our friends, which is what makes camp prayer special to me. Being a part of this Jewish community is what makes camp special.

To me the meaning of shabbat is to be optimistic about the upcoming week. When we are at camp we look forward to the trips and all of the camp traditions. At the beginning of this final week of camp, let’s all be optimistic and look look with excitement to what’s still to come this summer in camp.

Shabbat’s meaning to me is peace. Unlike other places in the world, we are lucky to have peace in our community. There are many people who are unable to experience peace, especially due to recent events in our country and around the world. So as you walk around camp for the rest of the summer, be thankful that there is peace and you are able to be who you are.

By Charlotte and Abi
Here at camp in Galil we try seeking meaning in everything we do. One of my favorite examples of when we found meaning is an activity we did during Jlife. During this activity we were all split into groups and were given roles of different people going through different hardships. Then our faculty gave us continuous instructions to either take a step forward if you had a certain privilege or take a step back if there was something you didn’t have. This helped us to realize that little things we take for granted everyday are privileges not everyone has. Part of seeking meaning is understanding our position in the world. We ask everyone to take a moment to realize how lucky you are to be here. Thank you and we hope you can contribute to find bina in your remaining time at camp.

By Brendan and Jack
It is our last summer in junior camp. As the summer comes to an end, our roles will change. This year our programs have been more serious. We’ve talked about real life things that are deeper than some of the goofy programs we were used to. With this transition we seek meaning and understanding of our new roles as leaders.

By Elle, Hannah and Jillian
As you’ve heard, this week’s theme is binah, or seeking meaning. When we seek meaning, in services or around camp, it can connect us more to Judaism and each other. This summer in Galil we have worked on seeking meaning in whatever we do. We’ve done this in our camp milestones such as the Galil hike or even in everyday camp activities, like water Zumba. We’ve participated in the activities we’ve been doing for years, but we’ve also participated in some new activities as well. As our time in junior camp comes to an end, we are working hard to find meaning in each and every experience. Whether it’s something big or small, old or new, we encourage you to seek meaning in everything you do.

By Lily, Shayna and Tali
Silence is golden. Here at Camp Harlam silence is as hard to find as Coco Roos at breakfast! When you get a silent moment, use it to your advantage and embrace it. During silent prayer you can contemplate what you want to accomplish today. Maybe it’s as simple as climbing to the top of the tower, as fulfilling as learning to become a leader, or maybe it’s to gain self- confidence. Everyone is striving to do something unique. The real challenge is to find what’s most meaningful to you. Don’t feel down if you can’t do something the first time, learn from your mistakes and use them to your advantage. 

By Derek, Mo, Adam and Yatir
In our younger years of camp some of us thought Shabbat didn’t have meaning, but as we grew older we started to understand the real meaning of Shabbat. Shabbat is the day of rest. God’s creation of the world took 6 days and then Shabbat was a way to appreciate all that was created. Since this is our last year in junior camp we should not take moments like this for granted. As the rest of this service continues, think about how Shabbat has changed you in your years at camp.

By Elliot, Luke, Eli and Ezra
Life is unpredictable like a deck of cards. You never know what you’re going to draw. Some things just happen, like when you fall and skin your knees, or even any type of grief or illness. These things happen without warning. The Mi Shebeirach is a prayer we say for those in need of any kind of healing. During this time we encourage you to think of someone (you, your friends or family) or something in need of healing. 

By Ben, Sam and Jacob B.
At camp, we all have the freedom to eat and feel full, sleep and wake up feeling energized, take time away from home to relax and have fun, to be accepted in every way, try new things without fear of judgement, overcome obstacles and build character. Here at camp, during t’fillah, we have the freedom to express ourselves through prayer. Many people around the world don’t have the freedom to practice their religion as we do here, and we are so lucky. During the Mi Chamocha, we want you to think about all of the freedoms you have and how lucky you are to be here.