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Joy Serves G*d in Joy as a passionate performing percussionist, poet, publisher, photographer, publicist, sound healer, spiritual guide, artist, gardener and Gemini. "Ivdu Et Hashem B'Simcha" -Psalm 100:2 ....... Joy Krauthammer, active in the Jewish Renewal, Feminist, and neo-Chasidic worlds for over three decades, kabbalistically leads Jewish women's life-cycle rituals. ... Workshops, and Bands are available for all Shuls, Sisterhoods, Rosh Chodeshes, Retreats, Concerts, Conferences & Festivals. ... My kavanah/intention is that my creative expressive gifts are inspirational, uplifting and joyous. In gratitude, I love doing mitzvot/good deeds, and connecting people in joy. In the zechut/merit of Reb Shlomo Carlebach, zt'l, I mamash love to help make our universe a smaller world, one REVEALING more spiritual consciousness, connection, compassion, and chesed/lovingkindness; to make visible the Face of the Divine... VIEW MY COMPLETE PROFILE and enjoy all offerings.... For BOOKINGS write: joyofwisdom1 at gmail.com, leave a COMMENT below, or call me. ... "Don't Postpone Joy" bear photo montage by Joy. Click to enlarge. BlesSings, Joy

BLOSSOMING CHERRY TREES - day 5 HOD sh b'CHESED

Psalms of My Soul
ספירת העומר
HOD sh b'CHESED
Sephirat HaOmer day 5 
Gratitude of Splendor in Kindness

Japanese Cherry Trees 
© Joy Krauthammer

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BLOSSOMING CHERRY TREES

- Joy Krauthammer

Blossoming Japanese Cherry trees,
So serene, pretty, pink, peaceful,
Return each year.
I anticipate them.
With joy I welcome them.
They are blessings,
Sent here from Japan.
Japanese people travel from LA
And from far to view them.
The elderly especially come,
Those who remember their childhood.

Annually on Mitzvah Day
Jews plant the trees.
So many cultures visit Lake Balboa.
Inter-connected, we all enjoy the scene each spring.

Sometimes a tree dies.
I wonder why...
Sometimes I bring a friend.
One my age, or an elderly friend, 88 years,
We sit and reflect under the purple wisteria arbor.
We walk around the man-made lake.
Pink trees reflect in the water.
I walk off the cement path to come close.
I touch the delicate soft pink petals.
From the ground, I lift fallen flowers.

Walking on uneven grass
I greet the geese, ducks and birds.
Along the way
I photograph.
In the sun, flowers sparkle,
Sometimes skies are grey.
At times, I kayak in the lake.
I have a license to paddle.
I enjoy the tranquil view from the water.
I love the Japanese Cherry trees
Here in the Valley.

I call others with reminders to visit.
"Maybe 5% Cherry blossoms are open," I report.
"Only 20% blossoms remain!" I warn.
Treasure them. Come.
"There's a lake in the Valley?"
I am questioned.
Visions of beauty, G*d's Splendor to behold.
Let your soul feel full of joy. Come.

The Cherry trees used to open and bloom in April.
Now their show appears earlier, and earlier each year.
The trees have life cycles.
"To everything there is a season." *
Sometimes I see only darker fuscia small buds
And few pretty pink blossoms
Because I arrive too soon;
Sometimes I am too late.
This year I missed them altogether.
A lost opportunity; I was sad.
I hope I learn from my mistake and
Receive G*d's glorious gift to us
Before it is too late.

Sometimes, to enjoy with a loved one,
There is no longer
A "next time".

I share my Cherry trees picture with you;
Loveliness: sweet, serene, pretty and pink.
It is G*d's divine garden.
I celebrate the awesome Cherry trees
As I do You and you.
I give praise and I am grateful
For the blesSings
In my Garden of Life.

* Ecclesiastes 3:1 (Kohelet)

(Sukkot 2007, 5768)

Japanese Cherry Tree blossoms (sakura)
© Joy Krauthammer


Japanese Cherry Tree blossoms and flying geese
© Joy Krauthammer


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Purple Wisteria, Lake Balboa arbor 
© Joy Krauthammer
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I am grateful that I was invited to read this poem at an international gathering for Thanksgiving. - Joy

STORY ~ Moe the Turtle:
2 POEMS ~ Cherry Trees:
PHOTOS ~ Lake Balboa
http://joys-favorite-fotos.blogspot.com/2012/06/lake-balboa_1.html

All photos/materials in sites by Joy Krauthammer are under copyright protection by © Joy Krauthammer.
Permission by Joy Krauthammer, needed to repost/copy/reprint/use. Request in Comments, FB, or write/call personally. 
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EMPATHY IN FRIENDSHIP - day 5 HOD sh b'CHESED

HOD sh b'CHESED
Kabbalistic Sephirat HaOmer - day 5 

PSALMS OF MY SOUL

ספירת העומר

Empathy in Friendship/Loving Kindness

- Joy Krauthammer



Furling or Unfurling?
Sago palm frond
© Joy Krauthammer  4.28.2016




These Omer Sephirot are important to me as I believe in today's humility, gratitude, splendor, and surely act in lovingkindness –this week’s Sephirah.  I can be a whole lot better with a loved one.

Early this morning because an ill friend doesn’t use computer so she doesn’t see my photos, nor writing, I wrote on a purchased pretty card to this elderly friend recovering from cancer surgery.  She has chosen not to have 'treatments' because she is "old and sick".

Hard for me to neatly handwrite when all I do is write on computer but I carefully took the time for each letter of every word covering the card’s inside with meaningful words. Not easy always to be a friend when the Friend is not her happier self.  Hard to write words of healing love when the ill one is not sharing serene energy, but spewing the opposite. When I think about how badly I felt during and following her phone call, I realize that Friend is feeling much worse, and I lessen my feelings trying to reach balance. (Wasn't too easy because a person very important in my music life (and the world) died two days earlier and I've been writing condolence letters filled with photos, and today e-mailed another sympathy note to cousins because a dear cousin, Bruce, z"l, died a week ago today. I am sad.) 

I wrote Friend that I am grateful for all that today is good. No pain for Friend today, etc. etc. 
E-mailed the Friend's friend overseas to tune her in...

I guess this is the very same that I do for an older sister for the same reasons, snail mail and call, but she does not express heavy upset nor anger.   Sister, too, is being cared for.
~

My Friend, z"l, succumbed to the cancer 3 months ago, 9 months after cancer surgery, one year ago at Pesach time. One day 3 months ago she waited for me to appear, and within minutes gave her neshamah back to the Holy One. I closed her eyes. I delivered the eulogy. I miss her and this year is the first in years that we didn't share Seder together. My heart is heavy. 2017
In the last year I have 'lost' a dozen friends and cousins...
                                                     ~

How do YOU express yourself in the energy of Hod sh b’Chesed? 

Is the Sago frond tightly closing OR is the frond unfurling?  
Where is the freedom? What is the freedom? How do we get there? What are we leaving?
How can our heart extend lovingkindness and share gratitude and splendor?



Furling or Unfurling?
Sago palm frond
© Joy Krauthammer  4.28.2016

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HOD sh b'CHESED
Kabbalistic Sephirat HaOmer - day 5 

PSALMS OF MY SOUL

ספירת העומר

Empathy in Friendship/Loving Kindness

- Joy Krauthammer  2015

Empathy--Not usually how I think about Hod.  Usually I think of gratitude and/or splendor.

Reaching this 5th Omer day, I called a friend whom I haven't spoken to in months. She doesn't return calls or e-mails, the same also for her other friends. I heard she is suffering yet another house malfunction and within a minute I called to share empathy within our friendship. Have no idea why she doesn't return calls to friends, but I can put that aside. I can put that aside for others also because they are involved in projects. I can still call and leave messages filled with greetings of friendship and info about events that would interest them.

With an older sister it is still harder.  She basically never calls, wanting me to call... and she doesn't return calls although she wants to receive them... If I knew she was in trouble at this time, I would be constantly present, but I know that in some ways, her life is better now, so I don't need to call as I had in past. I'm also not sending the daily or weekly pretty and decorated snail-mail cards that I was sending to cheer her. Think I'll call now and again wish her a chag Pesach sameach, and see how her Seders have been.

~
Should I answer a phone call to provide empathy in kindness (following similar calls), when I know the call is joyous, but it is disturbing me during my writing and art meditation.  I can hear the message so I know I can answer or not.
If I am not needed for Chesed and sympathy, I can be truthful to myself, and fully present if I do choose to answer when I can.


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EMPATHY IN FRIENDSHIP - day 5 HOD sh b'CHESED

Kabbalistic Sephirat HaOmer - day 5 

PSALMS OF MY SOUL

I'd much rather be sharing with friends and family sweet flowers that in Hod/splendor I appreciate 
and love to share in Chesed/lovingkindness. 

Poppy, Edith's Garden
© Joy Krauthammer   4.22.2016

Poppies, Edith's Garden
© Joy Krauthammer   4.22.2016

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MOM & BABY BONDING - day 6 YESOD sh b' CHESED

PSALMS OF MY SOUL

ספירת העומר
Mom & Baby Bonding In Love  

YESOD sh b' CHESED
Kabbalistic Sephirat HaOmer - day 6
- Joy Krauthammer

Mother and Baby
© Joy Krauthammer

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TWO SISTERS - day 6 YESOD sh b'CHESED

PSALMS OF MY SOUL
ספירת העומר

Yesod sh b'Chesed
Kabbalistic Sephirat HaOmer - day 6

Two Sisters Bonding in Love

- Joy Krauthammer

My sister and I spoke at length tonight during the energies of Yesod sh b'Chesed, and I feel we bonded more deeply, while we spoke about our interests both from when we were children and now as adults, finding similarities. Quiet and active Meditation was one topic, and portals and painting with our souls, another, as well as the very ocassional TV we watch which includes the same program. My sister encouraged me, joyous for me with successes I've experienced this week. (No violence for us.) 

I am grateful that she, too, is going forward with her creativity. This bonding bears love, support, and appreciation for each other. We counted the Omer. We live in separate cities and rarely see each other. We experience Chesed toward each other, unless times are emotionally difficult. Bonding tonight in Chesed is healing for me, for the times between us that have not been easy.

My sister, like me, grew up without a Jewish education, although we experienced Seders in our home. I am so grateful that my older sister went to two Seders. It must have been strange being at a totally Russian-led Seder, where Haggadahs are not even used, but the leader does it all himself in Russian. I'm grateful the Russians again invited my sister.

With whom do you want to bond more deeply?

JOY, Bird and Pansies Painting for Joy/me
 by my sister Arielle


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RIPPLES OF LOVE - day 6 YESOD sh b'CHESED

PSALMS OF MY SOUL
ספירת העומר

Kabbalistic Sephirat HaOmer - day 6
Yesod sh b'Chesed


Create Ripples of Love

- Joy Krauthammer


RIPPLES OF LOVE
from movie Ripple Reflections #2 With Joy
A Selfie by © Joy Krauthammer



This movie, Ripple Reflections #2 With Joy, was created by me a few months ago to honor my 90 year old beloved mentor friend, Edith, because she serves as my 'life guard' at her swimming pool each summer.  For several years we have closely bonded sharing a deep lingering friendship filled with loving-kindness, compassion, differences, respect, laughter, truth and joy. Edith composts and gardens, and I eat her harvest. 

I live out my inner child at Edith's home. A Christian woman, Edith reminds me each Elul about Cheshbon HaNefesh / accounting of the soul, wondering if I will ask forgiveness from her for anything that I think I wrongly did. I always ask her forgiveness and Edith always says, "There's nothing to forgive." Edith is so forgiving.

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Special for me to post this now because I just now returned home from my friend Edith's party where her family celebrated their Easter holiday, and Edith's 94th birthday. I'm blessed with Chesed to be included as 'family'. Being Passover, I couldn't share the meal nor birthday cake but brought chocolate bunnies for the great-grandchildren. 2017

How do you deeply bond in lovingkindness? With plant, animal, human?

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Kabbalistic Sephirat HaOmer - day 6  ספירת העומר
RIPPLES OF LOVE - YESOD sh b'CHESED
PSALMS OF MY SOUL  © Joy Krauthammer


"A friend is someone 
who knows the song in your heart 
and sings it back to you when 
you have forgotten the words." 

© Joy Krauthammer  4.26.2016

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MY HANDS ARE HOLY - day 7 MALCHUT sh b'CHESED

Psalms of My Soul

ספירת העומר

MALCHUT sh b'CHESED
Kabbalistic Sephirot Counting of the Omer day 7

MY HANDS ARE HOLY

- by Joy Krauthammer

The 7th day (G*d's holiest number) of the Kabbalistic Sephirat HaOmer Counting is Malchut sh b'Chesed, sovereignty within a week of loving kindness, in combination, a pair. All the energies of the six Sephirot flow into the 7th. Malchut is the holy vessel to hold all the energies that come before. My expression filled with inspiration strongly manifests from this vessel.

When on the 7th day of the Exodus (Exodus 15:20) Miriyahm HaNeviah danced through the Kriat Yahm Suf, she was prepared with drums, timbrels, to have all the women dance with her and they sang. Miriyahm could do this because she was a prophet and because of the great love, the Chesed she manifested ever since a child, in so many ways for the Israelites.

I, too, like Miriyahm have the freedom (away from Mitzrayim / constricted places) to celebrate in joy as I offer my leadership, and it is accepted.

I know my place, and the contribution that I make to my People. That is my Chesed. As G*d's emanations flow through me and come to rest in Malchut, awakening more fully my expression of connection, flowing through Hod in appreciation, gratitude, splendor and humility, and guided by The Divine One -- boundless with Netzach going forward, and birthing in Yesod, although Gevurah is not far away to again hold me in place in restriction, and keep me in balance through Tiferet, central place of beauty and harmony, and the Tree of Life.

It is my desire to perfect, as I can, my own Sephirot in my Tree of Life. In counting, I examine myself with the hope that I can cleanse and purify myself in an internal mikveh, to arrive at Mount Sinai, again this year. In Chesed I am not only giving through my loving-kindness which manifest in many ways, I am also receiving the energies of others as they receive me. That is for me a serious teaching. Through my receiving in consciousness, the love and appreciation from others, I need to be more aware of the gifts of G*d that come through others as blesSings and directed towards me. It is wrong if I don't fully accept the abundDance of love offered to me. I am still learning how to humbly receive and honor the other as they share their Chesed. My heart and soul feel the gift from others as they smile at me, connecting to me and my gift from G*d. My smile and expression of soul truly reflect theirs and I am expanded. The energy circulates and gains strength. My drumming bursts forth in glee and subtlety as a direct response of this love. (Please see my accompanying Drum poem and sketch.)

..."And the way to sing the song of joy is by seeking the good in all people, especially in our selves. Each good point is one more note in the song of life." - Rebbe Nachman of Breslov

Reb Shlomo Carlebach, z'l, taught me, as his drummer, that the "Hands are the holiest part of our body because they reach the highest." I reach, outstretched beyond myself, like an oar (ohr) in my hand, and find it important to acknowledge this blesSing as my gift of Chesed. My hands literally become the blesSings shared with community as I am a vessel for G*d's energies, as I am played through my hands and my heart.  (I wrote a Chesed story, "MOE" about my outstretched oar / 'ohr', in http://www.joys-prose.blogspot.com/ )

The word "Sephirah" has a root from "sapir," a sapphire stone, a translucent crystal. The window "tzohar" which is known in Torah to have been at the top of Noah's ark, was possibly a "sapir", a shining crystal sapphire.

My Hebrew name given to me by Reb Shlomo Carlebach is "Tzoharah", which is the word for the ark's top window.  As Gila Rena Tzohara, Shlomo mamash named me in 1994 on Shabbat Pekudei, "Double Joy and Light". I am grateful and feel the innate responsibility to 'shine' as joy, which is what I feel. It's important for me to recognize my reasons for being. My first Lubavitch rabbi at my wedding two decades earlier, named me "Gila" for my rejoicing, and my Reb Zalman Schachter-Shalomi (also ordained by Lubavitch) named me "Rena" for my joy of song. I feel blessed.

With my greater guided awareness of self through the Kabbalistic Omer counting, I am able to cleanse off some shmutz that is a veil for me. That then purifies me to go beyond the seven weeks, to the next and last 'Gate', the 50th, and reach Shavuot at Mount Sinai. And yes, with my tof / my timbrel in outstretched hand in joy, like Miriyahm at the Yahm Suf in a state of mochin d'gadlut / spiritual expansion.


How and from where does your offering flow into our world?
In what moments have you felt great chesed/lovingkindness?
~


Drumming, Drumming, Drumming
Women drumming, Women dancing.
I am sunning, I am singing
I am dancing, I am drumming
I am blesSing, I am loving, I am holy
I am drumming
on the conga, on the djembe, on my dumbek
I release
I let go
I breathe
I am free

- by Joy Krauthammer
.
(What is "sunning"?
It is basking in the warmth of the Light and radiating light out into the universe.)

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Psalms of My Soul
ספירת העומר

MALCHUT sh b'CHESED
Kabbalistic Sephirot Counting of the Omer day 7


GATES OF GILA
© Joy Krauthammer 


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WEEK #2 ~ Gevurah

Sephirotic OMER WEEK #2 ~ Gevurah 

~ Strength, Limitations, Judgement, Discernment, Discipline, Direction, Respect, Awe, Humility.

From where does your strength come?

"A Song of AscentsI will lift up mine eyes unto the mountains: from whence shall my help come?"
 - Psalm 121:1



Santa Susana Mountains
Chatsworth, CA
© Joy Krauthammer  4.2.2017

Santa Susana Mountains
Chatsworth, CA
© Joy Krauthammer  4.2.2017

Santa Susana Mountains
Chatsworth, CA
© Joy Krauthammer  4.2.2017



All photos/material on this site are under copyright © Joy Krauthammer and may be copied only with permission from owner Joy Krauthammer, and may not be altered.

DON'T POSTPONE JOY - day 8 CHESED sh b'GEVURAH

PSALMS OF MY SOUL

ספירת העומר

DON'T POSTPONE JOY - day 8 CHESED sh b'GEVURAH

Kabbalistic Sephirat HaOmer - day 8
- Joy Krauthammer


© Joy Krauthammer 


Express and direct your JOY toward others through Chesed/Loving Kindness.
Don't hold back, give it away. Let it flow.
When do you feel you must limit your generosity of love or is more love/giving needed?

Needlepoint by Caroline Epstein Blatman, z"l,
the very first needlepoint that beloved friend Caroline had ever created.
Made with love for Joy, embellished with ribboned timbrel, JOY, a Chai, flowers we loved, and in purple!
Caroline had made "Don't Postpone Joy" t-shirts for friends and family.
I had the great delight in introducing Caroline to her beloved husband, Dick, z"l.
They were very happily married for about 20 years.
Rabbi William Kramer, z"l, told me that I created angels by introducing the couple. - Joy 
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CHESED SH B'GEVURAH
Chesed Heart with a Gevurah Mechitzah - day 8
Boundary and Strength for Lovingkindness

Heart, Main Street, Venice, CA
© Joy Krauthammer  4.25.2016

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On this 8th Day of Counting the Omer, I lead a Joyous Nature Photo Walk at the Japanese Garden. 
See how your Chesed flows by the Garden Lake.  Join us.

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Kabbalistic Sephirat HaOmer - day 8 ספירת העומר
Lovingkindness in Design ~ CHESED sh b'GEVURAH
PSALMS OF MY SOUL © Joy Krauthammer

Look forward to seeing all who are joining me for today's Joyous Nature Photo Walk. 
We are photographing at the Japanese Garden in the Sephirat HaOmer energies of today: 
Chesed sh b'Gevurah.

How is your Chesed flowing within boundaries, and in awe and respect?

What have you planted and created to share in lovingkindness?

Kasuga Lantern for peace. Water Purification in respect to enter Tea House.
© Joy Krauthammer 

Water Lilies shared for love and grown with awe in water garden.
© Joy Krauthammer 

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May the refinement work of cosmic cleansing that I do on myself during the 49 days of Kabbalistically Counting the Sephirat HaOmer help me to mamash/truly be who I am, and need to become. I need to delete klipot/husks (negative influences) and again ready myself for Shavuot by strengthening, elevating and perfecting my midot/character traits.
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POSTER ART LIMITS - day 9 GEVURAH sh b'GEVURAH

Psalms of My Soul

POSTER ART LIMITS - day 9 GEVURAH sh b'GEVURAH


GEVURAH sh b'GEVURAH
Sephirat HaOmer day 9

Today, I spent a few hours working within limitations to redesign an event poster to be two by three feet. 
My own limits within the size limits are to be as specific as possible, without any errors, and to be attractive while being exacting, and to get event invitation message across.

I wanted beauty to shine quietly within boundaries created on digital computer. 
This means to have elements equal, balanced, symmetical, centered, focus on importance with best sizing of fonts and font styles. Not a wild abstract design. A large poster to be displayed in a synagogue lobby on an art easel.

To recreate the poster from flyer I'd designed, I used discipline, limitations, judgement, borders and boundaries. I love curves, but instead used straight lines and angles to create effect for synagogue.
Two presenters' portraits on poster are different. One casual in action and passion (that's me) with background and the other a portrait of rabbi with plain background. I thinly framed each photo to call equal importance to them, so that one is not lost in poster space. I cropped to reduce my photo.
I matched separate fonts with specific details across poster to not be complicated. 
See poster below for Jewish Wisdom & Wellness event. 




AND
on same day today, I recreated a digital painting of mine of River of Light over a photograph of a Costa Rica forest path, so that this too would shine with beauty in specific limitation. River of Light will be displayed for a few months beginning this Sunday in a Healing exhibit at American Jewish University. 

I had to recreate to increase the resolution and reduce pixalization. Using boundaries and judgment, I created what I think is a work of beauty and great meaning. The Healing theme created for Sephirat HaOmer, is not only about humans but also of our care for the universe, Tikkun Olam, and our concern for Healing Water during a time of severe drought, water waste, and pollution.

I've spent many hours recreating this artistic imaginal theme to be able to be enlarged for display. This digital painting composite like the event poster above, is created within great Gevurah.
Stretching past Gevurah, I feel good that I've never sbefore een a placment of Sephirot in the way I have placed the Omer stones, and with a heart for Tiferet, in the middle.



© Joy Krauthammer 

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In Painting, the bottom of River IS dirty closer to humans, because River of Light is showing that the RIVER NEEDS HEALING FROM THE DROUGHT and OUR misuse of WATER, our waste and pollution. 
The more dry river bottom showing is symbolic of our universe and ALL WATER issues. 

We the people must cleanse/purify/correct our actions (as in Counting Sephirat HaOmer) to do what is right to clean/HEAL our world, Tikkun Olam.

The Sephirot HaOmer stones are higher up the clean River because higher is more G*dly.


With Gevurah, I am actively conscious of my water usage including how I shower, brush my teeth, water my garden, wash my clothes and wash my dishes. A couple weeks ago I led a 52Frames group photo walk to the local Lake Balboa on World Water Day and spoke on healing water.  A couple week prior to that, I helped lead an event for Parliament of World Religions on Healing Water. I played my water percussion during a very limited time within an event led by a friend for International Women's day.  Please Hashem, help us have clean water.

All photos/materials in sites by Joy Krauthammer are under copyright protection by © Joy Krauthammer.

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