Today is nineteen days, which is two weeks and five days of the Omer in the year 5782. הוד שבתפארת, Hod ShebeTiferet, Splendor of Beauty. My feelings on the world have not changed. Abortion is healthcare. Banning it is part of Christian hegemony. Ukraine deserves to be free and its people safe. Over a million people have died in the United States from COVID-19. Ongoing death and longterm illness are problems we are collectively refusing to acknowledge. Right now, I am going to put those things aside and meditate into beauty.
There is something about water that is so appealing to the human soul. There is a reason we continue to be drawn to waterfronts, despite our knowledge about climate change.
Holding space for beauty
A key aspect of Hod is bringing forward into reality a space for God to reside. Netzach and Hod are connected to the legs of the human body. They are the pillars of the temple within. As pillars, they pull forward the sefirot that precede them.
For example, my husband is an incredible artist who designs furniture unlike anything you can buy in a store. (He even holds a patent for a table design.) This is a man who understands how to honor the splendor of beauty. It is why he designed our Ketubah, our wedding invitations, and our wedding program. And why, when I told him that actually, the makeup space he created in our bathroom would limit the lifespan of my makeup, he took up the challenge and designed a vanity for me. (Nevermind that yes, you read correctly — when we redid our bathroom, space was saved for an Ikea-built makeup station, with my grandmother’s mirror on the wall and surrounded by lights.)
I have learned the splendor of beauty from Chung-Mau.
Appreciate Beauty in All Its Forms
Every human is beautiful. Every soul is unique.
Getting lost in a television show, whether a soap opera or a documentary, is appreciating beauty.
Letting music lift your soul or comfort your brokenness is appreciating beauty.
Oh and a concert, or a festival — goodness, it’s been many years since I’ve let music wash over me that way. Such splendor of beauty.
Watching a film in a huge theatre or on a small screen is beautiful.
Going to the theatre and seeing actors perform — whether a drama, a comedy, or a musical — is beautiful.
Attending an art exhibit. Or going to an artist talk (!!) is splendor of beauty.
May we allow ourselves moments to sink into the splendor of beauty today and everyday.