Minna is also in the midst of her own version of this important creative work -- she is running a six-week voice and singing workshop at a local state mental hospital. The stories she has brought back of these patients creating their own songs -- and asking for help for each other by singing them together -- have been so inspiring for me, and I hope soon to share a detailed description of some of this work. Two of my students this summer also ran a workshop for mental health clients at a day center where the clients composed their own prayers.
We often think of mental illness as so 'other' -- as something strange and far off that only happens to people who are locked away in some giant, cold instutution. But, in fact, it is widespread and touches us all. It is hard to find hope amid its inexplicable afflictions. Kol HaKavod -- more power to you! -- to all who do this Holy work of helping find voice and hope amid it!