Twelve Days of the Omer 5779, Splendor of Strength

Today is twelve days, which is one week and five days of the Omer. הוד שבגבורה, Hod ShebeGevurah, Splendor of Power; prophetic judgment.

As I observe the ways in which my Yetzer HaRa foils my plans for discipline, I also daydream about the splendor just beyond my grasp. Last night, I painted a beautiful picture in my mind about the person I want to be. Today, I have the opportunity to bring it a step closer to reality. 

Netzach and Hod: the pillars upholding the Temple

The Pillars of the Temple were full of splendor. The pillars of Judaism give us strength as we face anti-Jewish violence.

Tonight, Yom Hashoah, Holocaust Remembrance Day begins. There still aren’t as many Jews alive now as there were on the eve of World War II. May we all light a candle, either physically or virtually, for a particular victim. May their names and their memories never be forgotten.

I cannot choose fear or the path of blending into the dominant culture. Judaism nourishes my soul and is the bedrock of my life. Hod Shebe Gevurah, splendor of strength, reminds me that no matter the danger: the deep wisdom of Judaism is more powerful than all the hatred in the world. 

Am Yisrael Chai

This is what we mean by Am Yisrael Chai, the people Israel live. We are buoyed by the splendor of our tradition. HaShem radiates strength and discipline into this world and we are vessels for that strength.

May we never forget those murdered in World War II. May my particular focus on the Jewish victims not be mistaken for disregarding the horror faced by other groups then and throughout time. May we have the strength to speak truthfully, allowing ourselves to be vessels for Divine light. 

May our light shine forth and transform the darkness.

Previously on the 12th day of the Omer

12 Days of the Omer 5778: Give yourself permission to share your truth.

12 Days of the Omer 5777: When I understood Hod as the sephira of humility.