Heschel Starts New Goat Yoga Minyan

By Shira Mack ‘24, Assistant Features Editor and Karen Messer ‘24, Assistant News Editor 

Introducing…GOAT YOGA MINYAN! Debuting this past Friday, this minyan was established by Rabbi Jonathan Klatt in response to countless requests from students to bring goats to tefillah. The goat yoga minyan features live goats trained to teach yoga. The minyan is an immersive experience that can only be found at the Heschel School. This wonderful alternative to tefillah takes place in the high school dining hall every morning. Even if you aren’t a member of the minyan, you might just be able to catch a goat on its way out and pet one! Every Friday, the goats stay until lunchtime. Remember to keep your hands flat if you feed the goats, lest your fingers get nibbled on.

Sophomore Yoav Cohen found his experience in the first two meetings to be riveting. “Don’t get me wrong, I was terrified at first. But after they chewed on my hair a bit and climbed on me during my downward dog pose, I could see that there was nothing to be afraid of. The goats were helpful, gently pushing me with their hooves to stretch me further.” The tefillah aspect of the minyan was also a hit for Cohen. He said, “The goats reminded me to do the Shema and bleated at me if I talked during the prayers. If you don’t have deathly animal allergies, this is definitely the minyan for you!”

Another student, sophomore Jayla Davis, complimented the goats on their exceptional teaching abilities. “I never thought that I could be taught by goats the same way I am taught by humans, but the goats did a great job and proved me wrong. I guess I thought the language barrier would be too hard to overcome. I should have known, from Hebrew class, that I could be taught in a language I don’t understand!” she said.

One teacher, Jonathan Klatt, even sat in on tefillah for a chance to see the goats for themselves. “I was truly blessed to have experienced this. Watching all the students connect with their goats really touched me. One goat caught me by surprise after it leaped onto my lap and sat with me for the rest of the tefillah.”

The goat yoga minyan has received raving reviews. So come and try it for yourself this Friday at 8:00 am sharp. Don’t be late; the goats are strict with attendance! 

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