Check out 10Q to stay reflective this holiday.
When the sun sets on Rosh Hashanah, many of us will have spent one or two days in reflective prayer and contemplation of the year to come.
Traditionally, Jews are expected to spend the days between Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur — the Ten Days of Awe — maintaining this reflective mood and renewing relationships with those we have wronged by asking for forgiveness.
Then, reality sets in. Instead of reflecting, we grapple with the mundane details of juggling work with the schedules of the new school year. That can make hanging onto that sense of awe nearly impossible.
That’s where 10Q comes in. Part journal, part Jewish communal project, this initiative created by a Jewish renewal organization called Reboot provides those who sign up on its website with a daily prompt for 10 days that can be answered and stored in a private, online journal. The website also contains a 10Q Toolkit for Jewish community leaders that offers ideas and resources on how to start out the Jewish year in a mindful way, either in a synagogue or religious school setting or at the family dinner table.
Over a decade old, Reboot was the brainchild of authors, Jewish educators and other creatives who believe the arts are ideal vehicles to re-imagine Jewish rituals and traditions for coming generations of Jews. About 11,000 participants nationally have logged in answers to 10Q’s online journal.
Questions ask users to ponder their personal successes and regrets of the past year or events that happened within their family or in the world that impacted their lives.
“10Q’s online and off-line prompts provide a great way to capture that evaluation of your life, those thoughts about the future as well as focusing on the past so we can move forward in the new year,” said Rabbi Steven Rubenstein of Congregation Beth Ahm in West Bloomfield. He said the online and printable journal resources will be made available to his congregants through the synagogue bulletin and Facebook page. “I like how 10Q coaxes the user into journaling, so, in a year’s time, they can look back and see if they accomplished what they set out for themselves.”
Engaging Jews during the High Holidays is just the beginning for Reboot.
With established followings in cities like San Francisco, New York and Los Angeles, Reboot made its debut in Detroit last fall, thanks to a grant from the William Davidson Foundation.
Creative director Francine Hermelin Levite, a Detroit native, said that Reboot entered Detroit’s “Jewish ecosystem” starting last fall with a series of outreach programming and partnerships with existing Jewish oganizations through the arts, culture, food and ritual.
Just as it did last fall, Reboot, with its area partners, will set up pop-up 10Q tents at locales such as Temple Israel’s Labor Day picnic. Participants write their reflections about the year to come on postcards, which will be displayed for others to read and then will be mailed to the writer months later.
“Our current work has centered around cultivating partnerships and enriching communities with our current portfolio of national programs, including 10Q,” Levite said. “But now that Detroit is a core Reboot city, we are able to incubate our newest programs here. Reboot is best experienced at our signature events such as National Day of Unplugging and Death Over Dinner to spark conversations around Jewish identity and meaning that then ripple throughout the country.”