In the wake of all the devastating events we have witnessed over these past several weeks, I am reaching out to you today to share some thoughts and some helpful actions we can all take.
This is such a difficult and painful time for us all. As the news of the horrors continue to mount, we are shattered and heartbroken. We grieve and we fear, for loved ones, innocents of all ages, our extended family.
Hodesh Tov! Today is the new moon (Rosh Chodesh) of the month of Elul. This last month of our Jewish year sets into motion, a period of introspection known as Cheshbon Hanefesh- taking an account of the soul. This month is dedicated to the inner work of assessing how and where we may have fallen Continue Reading »
Dear friends, As you may already know, my husband, Steve, and I are currently in the process of moving into a new home. With great joy and a lot of lifting, we are disassembling and reassembling our material lives. As always, I find there are amazing connections between the weekly Torah portion and current activities Continue Reading »
Dear friends, Four weeks ago, we celebrated the holiday of Pesach, our Festival of Freedom. Around our tables we enacted the historic journey of the Israelites out of slavery. Perhaps we liberated ourselves a little bit more from the ways we may enslave ourselves through unconscious habitual devotion to repetitive patterns in our lives. To Continue Reading »
Dear friends, The section of Torah we are reading this week deals with a variety of powerful moments in life when it may be necessary to separate oneself from communal life and then, after a period of time, return to community connection. It calls for periods of separation and seclusion during the delicate period just Continue Reading »
Dear friends, This Shabbat we begin reading the book of Vayikra/Leviticus which opens with the word Vayikra which means, “God called out.” The verse begins: God called out to Moses and then spoke to him from the Tent of Meeting. (Lev.1:1) We note two odd things about this phrase. First, that in almost every other place where God speaks to Moses, Continue Reading »
Dear friends, Clearly what is on all our minds is the attack we experienced on our sacred space this week. It was shocking, painful and even disorienting. But the timing, according to our Jewish calendar, was actually quite remarkable. This attack took place during the week of parashat Terumah, that is, the week in which we Continue Reading »
Dear friends, Listen, Sh’ma! Our Torah portion begins with Yitro, Moses’ father-in-law, who listens and hears. Jethro, Priest of Midian, Moses’ father-in-law, heard all that God had done for Moses and for Israel His people, how the Lord had brought Israel out from Egypt. (Ex. 18:1) He hears of the Exodus, of the wonders that God performed Continue Reading »
Dear Friends, As we move into a new secular year, we turn the page into a new book of Torah this week. The book of Exodus/Shemot takes us on a journey from degradation to liberation, from servitude to sacred service. It is a transformational story that begins with pain and suffering, but whose generational patterns Continue Reading »