Photo by Charles Ward

An Incredible Journey to Jewish India 

 

In February, 2018, I set out on a Cultural Tour of Jewish India.  I had briefly been to 3 different cities along the coast of India while on a cruise in 2015 and I could not wait to go back.

This tour was a land tour that took us to 8 different cities including Mumbai, Cochin, Jaipur, Kolkata, Delhi and Agra.  It was a five star tour -- the only way to go when you are my age (too old to back pack around the country).  Our first stop was Mumbai where we stayed at the magnificent Taj Palace Hotel overlooking the port of Mumbai.  The Taj staff are masters at customer care...what an unbelievable place to stay. 

In Mumbai, we visited the Sassoon

Docks founded in the 1830's by a Jewish

immigrant, David Sassoon.  We also

visited Maghen David Synagogue which 

was founded by David Sassoon.  We

visited two other synagogues while in

Mumbai.  We also visited the town of

Alibaug where we were treated to an Israeli lunch by a  young chef who had opened a cooking school and a restaurant there. And we visited Elephanta Island, the 1st of several UNESCO World Heritage Sites that we would see in India.  Elephanta is a cave that, in the 7th century, was carved into a Hindu Temple honoring the god Shiva.  I was carried by 4 men in a Sudan chair up (and down) the 120 steps that led to the cave.

"My job as a Rabbi is to bring people closer to G-d..to be an extension of G-d...to be with people in their happiness and in their sadness."

View from our window at Taj

Carving at Elephanta

Being carried in a Sudan chair

More to follow about this fabulous trip.  Next, we will visit Cochin, the Miami of India!

   Maghen David