“A LITTLE BIT OF LIGHT DISPELS A LOT OF DARKNESS.”
The Alter Rebbe, Rabbi Schneur Zalman of Liadi (1745-1840)
May we each do what we can to shine light, so that others might see a path out of the darkness. jen
as galaxies unfurl
As day turns into night
and night back into day,
The Mystery is there
if we choose to be aware.
If we open our hearts
to the possibility of The Unity,
we can stand at the edge of infinity
as we watch galaxies unfurl.
1:23 pm CST (thru eclipse glasses)
1:36 pm CST (thru eclipse glasses)
1:58 pm CST (thru eclipse glasses)
2:21 pm CST (thru eclipse glasses)
2:27 pm CST (thru eclipse glasses)
2:28 pm CST (unfiltered total eclipse)
2:28 pm CST (unfiltered sun returns)
2:30 pm CST (thru eclipse glasses)
Friends– These photos that I took yesterday with my cell phone in Bowling Green, Kentucky, are not meant to inspire you with their accuracy, clarity, or quality. They are simply my attempt to share with you the experience of waiting and watching the unfolding of a natural phenomenon that was truly awe inspiring!!
That Science has explained to us the “how” and “why” of eclipses does not, in my mind, make them any less a “religious” experience. Not very often, in this country flooded with light-pollution, am I able to show my sons the Milky Way or a star-filled sky. But yesterday, we could stand together with a large crowd of mostly strangers and be reminded how very small we are, how dependent we are on the sun, how miraculous it is that moon is the right size and distance from the Earth to completely block the light from the sun, how lucky we are to be alive and able to witness such amazing moments . . . and that we are truly blessed and most surely ought to be grateful!!
If you ever have a chance to witness a total solar eclipse, I highly recommend it!!
And may we all find more moments that inspire awe and remind us to express gratitude to The Miraculous Mystery that is always there, hiding within and behind the rational answers provided by science, jen
Rabbi Simon said,
“There is no plant without an angel in Heaven tending it and telling it, ‘Grow!'”
Genesis Rabba 10:7.
A couple of months ago, there was a small thistle plant near the back gate of my patio. And I was going to pull it out, as my boys and I use the back gate to access community green space and tennis courts. But then, one morning, I noticed a rabbit eating the thistle plant’s leaves, and I decided we humans could step around the little thistle.
Then, as the thistle grew and we began to get scratched on thorns when we used the door, baby rabbits began to visit, so I absolutely could not remove the “weeds” that were attracting them!!!
After much rain and sun, and the urging of its angel in Heaven, the thistle now covers most of the walkway and is five feet (1.5 m) tall!
And it blooms really beautiful purple flowers that attract hummingbirds and bees to drink from them…
And a rabbit still visits regularly, although I’m not sure if it’s the original adult or a grow-up baby…
My lease requires me to “maintain” my patio area, so I’m expecting my landlord to stop by one of these days and demand that I remove the thistle. I doubt she would be swayed by my story of rabbits and the thistle’s angel in Heaven… but until it’s required, I’ll going to keep thanking the angel who grew the thistle that has brought so much beauty and life to our patio this summer!
shavua tov, a good week, to all, jen
Shema Yisrael: Hashem Eloheinu, Hashem echad.
Hear O Israel: Hashem is our Gd, Hashem is one.
Over the centuries, commentators have found multiple ways to interpret that declaration. The command to hear could be to the entire community collectively or to individuals. One could mean “our Gd is unique among the gods that are worshipped” or “there is only one Gd in all of creation.”
Yet perhaps the most interesting word in the Shema is Eloheinu, which is translated “our Gd,” but is derived from eloheim — a plural noun meaning gods, such that the Shema could be interpreted to mean “Hashem is all our gods and is one.”
And at this time in the history of human civilization, that seems to be an important lesson that humanity needs — whatever names we call, whatever language we speak, whatever our religious rituals… whether as individuals we most easily connect to The Sacred through music, art, prayer, study, acts of kindness, the beauty of nature, or relationship with others… we are all reaching for, and hopefully connecting with, the singular Unity that is the One mighty and awesome Gd of creation!
This weekend, through all of our experiences, in every moment, may we allow ourselves to connect to the One who hides behind the many.
Shabbat shalom, jen