Today is three days of the Omer. תפארת (אמת) שבחסד, Tiferet (Emet) ShebeChesed, Beauty of Love, Truth of Grace.
Balancing the energies inherent in overflowing love and clarifying boundaries is the essence of Tiferet. Beauty comes from knowing when to give and when to stop. From the balance of Love and Strength, the wellsprings of Truth emerge.
Today, let me sink into all the messy parts of me. My ego yearning for recognition. My Yetzer HaRa, inclination towards destructiveness, yearning for more social media scrolling, more television, more fun. My soul, yearning for a more disciplined prayer practice and focused studying. We each contain these elements of self. None of them are bad. When they are in balance, we are in balance. Without the Yetzer HaRa, passion would not exist; we would not pursue our goals or our loves. Without the ego, we would dissolve into other people, never holding space for our own soul’s journey. Without the soul, we wouldn’t have the foresight to contain the Yetzer HaRa and we wouldn’t have a vision of where we want to go.
The deep truth is that all parts of me have a purpose. I cannot stay in the depths of learning forever. My love of pop culture provides a gateway for expressing deep wisdom with recognizable metaphors. And my brain deserves rest as much as my body.
I will stumble along the way because I am human. Balance and harmony are difficult to maintain in a chaotic world. Instead of focusing on my errors, I resolve to meditate more deeply into the values that guide me on this journey. The beautiful flow of traditional Jewish prayer is a river of meditation I can float on whenever my ego releases into it. Intricate ideas composed by erudite scholars sing to my intellect, connecting ideas previously hidden in separate caverns of my mind. And pushing forward into learning the nuances of Rabbinic Hebrew grammar allows me to commune with my colleagues who passed from this world a few thousand years ago. The love that surrounds me is greater than I can ever imagine. I will honor that love by balancing my human desires with my soul’s yearning. May I remember every day to be a receptacle of grace and discipline. May the overflowing, everlasting Love of the universe and its eternal boundaries flow through me in perfect harmony.
Day 3 of the Omer 5778: harmonizing the all encompassing love of Chesed with the Discipline of Gevurah, experiencing beauty and from that beautiful merger, allowing truth to emerge.
Day 3 of the Omer 5777: merge in perfect harmony the strict boundaries of Gevurah with the overflow of love in Chesed.