The Soul Doctor — The Secret of Kabbalat Shabbat

A Carlebach Kabbalat Shabbat is an upbeat spiritual experience that has revolutionized the way many communities across the world bring in the Shabbat. What can be more natural in today’s busy and connected world than to turn off for 24 hours? To be at peace with yourself and with nature from the point at which you usher in the Shabbat through singing and dancing?

Coinciding with the show, “Soul Doctor” currently showing in Jerusalem until the 23 June, there will be a pre-Shabbat, Carlebach Kabbalat Shabbat led by Yehuda Katz and friends, at 11 a.m. this Friday the 15th June at Beit Shmuel Theatre Everyone is invited to show their Achdut.  It is free. Dari Carlebach, Reb Shlomo’s daughter, will talk about her father and his impact on the Jewish world.

About the Show :

“Combine Fiddler on the Roof with Jersey Boys, add some Hair and hokum and you get a taste of Soul Doctor…the musical hits the spot.” Philip Borough, Bloomberg.

The musical Soul Doctor tells the story of one of the greatest musicians of the 20th Century, Rabbi Shlomo Carlebach, and the story of his friendship with Nina Simone, the legendary jazz singer.

According to the producer Danny Wise, the Show tries to portray the dilemmas of the Younger Shlomo-  the conflicts of trying to spread Judaism and love in the post-holocaust period.

After seeing the show, this is clearly seen. There are amazing dialogues that deal with the new vs the old, Shlomo with his father and how to deal with the pain of the Holocaust. It also compares Shlomo’s need to bring Joy and Connection to Judaism (and Shabbat) to a parallel struggle that Nina Simone had for the rights of black people.

Special discounts until June 15th. Well Worth seeing, especially Ester Rada who plays Nina Simone whose performance is world class.

Word on the street is that the cast of the show “Soul Doctor” will attend the Kabbalat Shabbat Service at Beit Harav Kook on Rechov Harav Kook Street on Friday evening. These services are led by Nachman Solomon who grew up on the Carlebach Moshav and whose family can be considered scions of Carlebach Music. The minyan at Bet Harav is led by another Carlebach inspired soul doctor – Rabbi Itzchak Marmorstein (Even Shays) who is a passionate student of the teachings of Rabbi Avraham Yitzchak HaCohen Kook (1865- 1935) and who is doing pioneering work in bringing Rav Kook’s teachings to the public through classes, lectures and creative musical and dramatic presentations.


Carlebach Kabbalat Shabbat on youtube:

Carlebach Inspirational first time Shabbat story:

From the words of Reb Sholom Brodt Z”L who related the following :


Entering into Shabbos is similar to entering into Eretz Yisrael. Just like we had to leave the wilderness and enter into the Holy Land, so too each week we leave the existence of the weekdays and enter into the holiness of Shabbos. By observing Shabbat, we are witnesses proclaiming that there is a Creator, who created the world which belongs entirely to Him, and that He is ever present and watching over His creation. The question arises; how do we get out of the consciousness of weekdays into the holiness of Shabbos? Especially if we have already gotten trapped in the weekday life?

This is the secret of the Kabbalat Shabbat services. After we finish the last Mincha service of the week, before sunset on Friday afternoon, we start Kabbalat Shabbat. This service consists of seven Psalms: first we sing [and dance] the first six of these, which correspond to the six days of the week. Then we sing “lecha dodi’, and this is followed by the seventh Psalm: Mizmor shir l’yom haShabbat, the song of the Sabbath day.

The first of these, Psalm 95, begins with an invitation to dance and sing unto Hashem: L’chu N’rannenah L’Hashem, and it ends with a warning not to repeat the mistakes that our ancestors made in the wilderness. For it caused them to be stuck there for forty years, never reaching Eretz Yisrael. . Why do we start the Kabbalat Shabbat in this way? Why do we encounter this admonition just as we are about to enter into Shabbos?

Do you think that you are trapped in weekday consciousness? Do you think that you can’t escape it? There is only one-way Reb Shlomo zt”l used to say. Get up and dance, sing and dance your way into Shabbos for the Gates of Song are next to the Gates of Tshuvah. This the way home, back into the Holy Shabbos. You think you can’t sing and dance? Ask a friend to bless you and connect you to the World of Neginah.

See yourself in the world of song and SING! But remember, entering Shabbos is like entering Eretz Yisrael. It requires faith in trust in Hashem. It requires a willingness to leave the familiarity and spirituality of our wilderness existence, a willingness to leave the world of doing and to enter into the world of being.

About the Author
Jeffrey is a Blogger, Entrepreneur and Philanthropist (we can only dream) living in Jerusalem. He has five kids and three grandchildren. He is looking to spread the message of Ahavat Yisrael and Jewish Unity through the music and teachings of Rabbi Shlomo Carlebach and connecting our lost Jewish brothers and sisters to Israel. God and themselves.
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