Today is thirteen days, which is one week and six days of the Omer, 5780. יסוד שבגבורה, Yesod of Gevurah, Foundation of Strength.
Fascinated when people cannot define themselves. Spending so much time thinking that I couldn’t imagine not having an answer to the question. And yet, the truth is, it is easy to allow the foundation of our existence to rest on the vagaries of culture, employment, and family of origin.
Human connections: the foundation of human strength
I actually talked about this last year, so I won’t repeat myself.
As the day of Remembering the Jewish Catastrophe recedes, ensuring the Jewish future comes into focus. I made a decision early in this shelter-in-place existence that my family is more important than my rabbinical studies. Though I am far from a perfect parent, I know for sure that my daily tickles and encouragement is more important than my assigned readings.
I think a lot about single people, especially people who live alone. My four year-old hugs family members via FaceTime — by putting his arms around the tablet. That gesture seared in my memory as the most heart-breaking aspect of social distancing that I have personally experienced.
And all the people who have to grieve alone. Communities unable to comfort their mourners; unable to grieve as our tradition impels us to grieve. My heart breaks.
Staying distanced will help us survive.
Our strength lies in our ability to pivot. To accept a new reality we never imagined in order to save our own lives and the lives of the people around us. The economy is not more important than a single human life. Normalcy is not more important than a single human life.
The core of my discernment is the vision I have for myself.
Essentially, Yesod ShebeGevurah, Foundation of Strength, the Core of my Discernment is the clear-eyed understanding of who I want to be.
Choosing not to live in fear. Nurturing my ability for deep thinking and consuming written content continuously and thoroughly. I want to be fully present to the people around me and help create a future full of love, light, and soul connections.
Living towards the future. And so, I will continue to be the Tickle Monster, praying for more children to bring light into this world.
May the future continue to burn brightly in front of us, and may we have the fortitude to take the steps needed for all of us to live the tomorrow where we can embrace each other enthusiastically without fear.