When all is said and done here is what you have to remember. Yossi (the groom) flew in from Australia. AUSTRALIA. Where it is now summer. And he flew to New York. NEW YORK. Just to marry Chana Sara’leh. Now that is true love.
I had the privilege of photographing her brother’s wedding (you could check that out here if you feel so inclined), and it’s truly an honor to work with this wonderful family again. Clients that “get it” and understand why I shoot the way I do, and AGREE! That is a blessing :)
So sit back, grab some kombucha and kimchi, and enjoy this beautiful day (not like, today, I don’t know where you live (actually I do, but I don’t want to scare you) or on which day you are viewing this (see above), but like this wedding day).
I wrote that all last week, before this whole thing with Paris went down, and now it feels a bit trite.
Weddings are real, deep, and meaningful. I mean they happen all the time, and as part of the wedding-industrial-machine, I can fall into the cynical camp.
We tend to view things on the global scale as “big”, and “world-changing”, and we often direct our attention as such. But truthfully the world changes slowly as people work on themselves, their family, and their community.
One of the odder happenings by Jewish weddings is the custom of breaking the glass. At the end of the Chuppah the groom with a quick (sometimes practiced :) ) leg movement, smashes a glass (hopefully wrapped), after which everyone says “Mazel Tov!”, the band often starts playing and the solemness of the ceremony is quickly overrun by the joy of the family and friends.
The custom is there to remind us that no joy is ever complete while our Holy Temple is still unbuilt and we are still in exile.
So why is that the cue for everyone to go all ballistic with joy?
Well here’s the deal. The Talmud tells us that G-d allowed for the the destruction of the Temple due to “baseless hatred”. The petty rumor mills, the class distinctions, the arguing, the bickering. Which all might start out as small and innocent, but it’s like an avalanche, gaining speed and intensity as it rolls past the generations.
Marriage is the opposite of that. It’s one person promising the other that even though life isn’t perfect, that there will be little things that annoy us, bickerings that can degenerate into arguments, doghouses and worse. But we won’t let that happen. It’s a promise to focus on the good in each other, and, even when it doesn’t make sense, to love each other. In a word baseless love.
And that’s the beginning of the redemption.
Mazel Tov! Cue the band…
Special thanks to the awesome Aga Matuszewska from Storytellers and Co. for shooting this with me.