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  • Nick Viner
    Nick Viner is Chief Executive of the JCC. Formerly a senior partner of The Boston Consulting Group, Nick is also Chairman of Pop-Up, a young people’s charity, and a member of the London Jewish Forum.


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October 20, 2008


Anne Clark

Hello Naomi,

Actually the rabbis DID declare that the festive season is best enhanced by a bit of juggling and this applies in particular to Sukkot!

According to the Talmud, during the festival of Sukkot, the inhabitants of Jerusalem had the custom of holding a "Simchat Beit HaShoeva" or "Celebration of the Water-Drawing", referring to the water drawn from a spring on the outskirts of Jerusalem and used in the Temple service.

This event was characterized by extravagant celebration, including amazing juggling feats by eminent scholars such as Rabbi Shimon Ben Gamliel who used to juggle eight flaming torches!

For more information, see the Jewish Jugglers website:

in particular the articles 'Juggling in Post-Biblical Jewish Sources' by Raphael Harris and 'Torch Song' by Eliezer Segal.

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