MADGE IS SOAKING IN IT
In Judaism, that is.
According to CNN, Madonna made a midnight visit to the tomb of a Kabbalist (Rabbi Yehuda Ashlag). There was no word of her pouring a bottle of spirits upon the grave, ("for my homie, Hudi--peace in the afterlife, yo") but that doesn't mean it didn't happen.
And now, for my usual snarky and somewhat mean-spirited commentary on Madge's spiritual journey and her reappropriation of my name.
If she were a true Esther, she'd be living in relative poverty/obscurity on the Upper West Side, working for a living, searching for spirituality locally because she can't really afford plane fare to more exotic locales. Not that I generally advocate living the monastic life (at least not intentionally), but I believe that THAT much money will lessen your chances for achieving a real and lasting spirituality. When you're living in a castle and have become a media mogul with tons of money, how acutely can you feel spiritual emptiness?
The flip side: it's also hard to be spiritual when you're living paycheck-to-paycheck. But when you're living a life of modesty and moderation, when you've got just enough to cover your monthly bases, and have enough freedom to spend some time and some money in pursuit of a spirituality that works for you, I think you're more likely to find something more stable and lasting. (I think that's true for dating, too, but I have no proof of either.)
Some reports from abroad:
Miriam points out the differences in the media coverage of the visit (which I have dubbed the "Like a Prayer" Tour) which indicate that Madonna did not actually get to visit the Western Wall because of either a)fear of being mobbed by fans or b) because she tried to go there on Shabbat and was shooed away by haredim chanting "Shabbis."
Allison says she pities any tourist who goes all the way to Israel and doesn't get to visit the wall. Thanks to Garden State, I predict a new wave of Zach Braff-loving traffic to the Kotel. If Zach and Natalie Portman are really dating, they could become the new celebrity ambassadors of a hipper, cooler Israel.