The weekly rhythm underlying our weekends mirrors - although we may not be fully aware of it - the Biblical rhythm of the Seventh Day: the Jewish Sabbath and the Christian Sunday. Both celebrations and vacations are opportunities for self-recreation, anomalies and interruptions of our workday endeavours. But vacations imply "vacant" time, an emptiness that we fill according to our private desires. A feast day, on the other hand, implies full-time commitment, a hiatus for reflecting on our undertakings, a ritualised moment of social regeneration, a collective experience devoted both to the sacred and the intimate relationships we entertain with ourselves and others.
Massimo Don teaches Theoretical Philosophy at the Vita-Salute San Raffaele University in Milan.
Stefano Levi Della Torre teaches in the faculty of Architecture at the Milan Polytechnic and is a former member of the Jewish Community Council of Milan.