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Old 05-16-2019, 03:05 PM
 
558 posts, read 54,304 times
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I recently discovered this Israeli-American co-produced action/adventure television series, called Dig. I didn't even get past the pilot episode when I came across a troubling scene. It involves a woman who is an archaeologist who brings a man to an ancient mikvah, and the two of them use it like some kind of hot tub.

The woman says to the man that the ancient mikvah (which is located under the Temple Mount in Jerusalem) is very sacred, "if you believe in that sort of thing." Then she jumps in, and invites this guy to join her for a swim. I mean, even if you didn't happen to find it disturbing that a couple would use a mikvah as a co-ed hot tub, what kind of archaeologist would treat an ancient site like that?

I mean, I know it's tv and it's not real, but the apparent sexualization of a mikvah still bothered me. Am I the only one?

The scene appears at about 20:00 in the episode.



Anyway, this leads to the question: When does a mikvah stop being sacred? If ever?

(This 2015 tv series didn't last more than a single season, btw)
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Old 05-16-2019, 04:32 PM
 
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I guess it stops being a mikvah when it is no longer used for that purpose.

Here is a (admittedly ridiculous) example. For some unknown reason, a person buys an abandoned synagogue with a non-working mikvah on it, and that's where they put the bathroom and use it for a spa type tub after fixing the plumbing. Then, it is no longer a mikvah, it's a tub.

In the movie (which I didn't watch) it's a historical site with an ancient mikvah on it and deserves to be respected as such. You are right to be offended by the scene. I was offended at the description!

Slight change of topic, I accepted your friend request (thank you so much!!)... did I do it right?
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Old 05-16-2019, 05:14 PM
 
558 posts, read 54,304 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shalhevet View Post
I guess it stops being a mikvah when it is no longer used for that purpose.

Here is a (admittedly ridiculous) example. For some unknown reason, a person buys an abandoned synagogue with a non-working mikvah on it, and that's where they put the bathroom and use it for a spa type tub after fixing the plumbing. Then, it is no longer a mikvah, it's a tub.

In the movie (which I didn't watch) it's a historical site with an ancient mikvah on it and deserves to be respected as such. You are right to be offended by the scene. I was offended at the description!

Slight change of topic, I accepted your friend request (thank you so much!!)... did I do it right?

Got it – thanks for your friendship!

Yep, I've heard about Christian churches being renovated and turned into unusual homes for people. I think they do something first to de-sanctify the church? I honestly don't know whether we do something similar with abandoned synagogues. Have to ask Rabbi Rosends.

Somehow, though, it still doesn't seem right to me for someone to re-purpose a synagogue in that way. Maybe it has something to do with all the synagogues that were desecrated, burned and destroyed by the nazis in Europe during the war. Seeing something like that happen all over again to a synagogue really troubles me – even if it's not nazis doing it.
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Old 05-17-2019, 07:49 AM
 
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I think the real issue here is that tv is sheker. Of course they celebrated immorality.
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Old 05-18-2019, 06:36 AM
 
Location: Coastal New Jersey
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rachel NewYork View Post
Got it – thanks for your friendship!

Yep, I've heard about Christian churches being renovated and turned into unusual homes for people. I think they do something first to de-sanctify the church? I honestly don't know whether we do something similar with abandoned synagogues. Have to ask Rabbi Rosends.

Somehow, though, it still doesn't seem right to me for someone to re-purpose a synagogue in that way. Maybe it has something to do with all the synagogues that were desecrated, burned and destroyed by the nazis in Europe during the war. Seeing something like that happen all over again to a synagogue really troubles me – even if it's not nazis doing it.
Just jumping in here--it's called a deconsecration, and it's always a little sad. Often there were large, ornate, inner-city churches whose congregants have moved to other areas, and the buildings are repurposed.

It's off-topic here, really, but since you are in NYC, I'm sending you a DM with a link to one.
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Old 05-18-2019, 04:24 PM
 
Location: U.S.A
53 posts, read 6,329 times
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We of course are disappointed because it is not being used as was intended. If we didn't feel this way it would indicate there is an issue within ourselves. It simply means that we care. That's a good thing.
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Old 05-20-2019, 10:56 AM
 
558 posts, read 54,304 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mightyqueen801 View Post
Just jumping in here--it's called a deconsecration, and it's always a little sad. Often there were large, ornate, inner-city churches whose congregants have moved to other areas, and the buildings are repurposed.

It's off-topic here, really, but since you are in NYC, I'm sending you a DM with a link to one. [IMG]file:///C:\Users\Owner\AppData\Local\Temp\msohtmlclip1\01\ clip_image001.gif[/IMG]
Got the link. Thanks, MQ!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jacob II View Post
We of course are disappointed because it is not being used as was intended. If we didn't feel this way it would indicate there is an issue within ourselves. It simply means that we care. That's a good thing.
To tell you the truth, I'm even disappointed to see old churches re-purposed so.
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Old 05-22-2019, 10:16 PM
 
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It has happened in many places throughout the US. There was a recent documentary made about synagogues in small towns that closed down. I wish I could remember the name. It aired on PBS. They didn't know what to do with their religious articles and who should get their torahs.
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Old 05-23-2019, 04:48 AM
 
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The recent news about the discovery of more than 1,000 Holocaust victims in a mass grave outside Brest, Belarus is probably the most compelling reason to be disturbed by the re-purposing of old synagogues in Europe. Belarus, an authoritarian nation run by its antisemitic president Alexander Lukashenko, has shown particular callousness in regard to the discovery of this mass grave, by permitting construction for luxury apartments to continue on the site.

You can read more at the link I've included below, but this quote from the article pertains specifically to the re-purposing of the synagogues, as well as Jewish gravestones:

Quote:
In the decades since the genocide, the city of Brest has faced accusations of callousness toward its Jewish population. A prominent synagogue saw a movie theater built over it. Other synagogues were converted into shops, schools, hospitals, offices and gyms. Jewish gravestones were "recycled" for roads, gardens and other purposes, according to Vice, and Brest's Holocaust museum comprised "a room in a basement," according to the BBC.
https://www.npr.org/2019/05/22/72572...-grave-discove
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Old 05-23-2019, 01:12 PM
 
Location: US
27,954 posts, read 15,039,743 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Coney View Post
It has happened in many places throughout the US. There was a recent documentary made about synagogues in small towns that closed down. I wish I could remember the name. It aired on PBS. They didn't know what to do with their religious articles and who should get their torahs.
Who!...Who would just leave behind the Torahs?...
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