Madonna Shares Spiritual Awakening in Israeli Daily Newspaper

Article excerpt

Byline: Matti Friedman Associated Press

JERUSALEM After a long career as a singer, dancer, new-age seeker and megacelebrity, Madonna added a new item to her resume Friday Israeli newspaper correspondent.

An article in Fridays edition of Israels biggest daily, Yediot Ahronot, bears the Material Girls byline. It describes her spiritual awakening upon discovering Jewish mysticism, called Kabbalah, after which, she writes, "all the puzzle pieces started falling into place."

Madonna is bringing her Sticky & Sweet tour to Israel in September, which no doubt explains the timing of her journalism debut here. But she also has ties to Israel and Judaism through her involvement with the Los Angeles-based Kabbalah Center, whose new-age version of Judaisms ancient mystic tradition has become popular among members of Hollywoods A-list.

The 50-year-old pop icon has taken the Hebrew name Esther and came to Israel on private pilgrimages in 2004 and 2007 along with other Kabbalah devotees.

In the article, Madonna, who was raised Roman Catholic, describes hearing about Kabbalah for the first time at a dinner party in Los Angeles while pregnant with her daughter Lourdes, who is now 12. She had recently completed a star turn in the movie "Evita," she writes, but "still felt like something was missing in my life."

She went to her first class, taught by a teacher named Eitan, after years of practicing yoga and reading about Buddhism, Taoism and early Christianity. …