Today is thirty-four days, which is four weeks and six days of the Omer. יסוד שבהוד, Yesod ShebeHod, Foundation of Splendor.
Spiritual reflection is another escape route. Like Facebook, Netflix, and YouTube, pondering ideals can be a way to let go of every day concerns. Taking a break from real life, providing sanctuary from the storm. That’s nice, but a spiritual life that does not connect to concrete reality is not enough. It will neither transform you nor allow you to discover the true depths of truth waiting for you.
The Foundation of Splendor is where the ethereal meets the material. What binds you to the life you’re living? The image above foreshadows my answer: parenting. I don’t have the words or the instincts to be the type of parent I want to be. My head in the clouds, I can’t understand why a three year-old wont follow simple directions; why talking about his dreams is so much more interesting to him than actually going to sleep to have dreams.
That daily prayer practice that I’ve been struggling to maintain — that is what brings me strength to breathe through my frustration and remember what kind of parent I want to be. I am trying hard not to lean into my instinctual reactions to toddlers. I’m great with babies and adults. Everything in between, that’s where I’m leaning into growing.
And I trust that making time, even five minutes of time, every day for spiritual reflection refocuses me on who I want to be and how I want to engage with the world. It all comes back to those morning blessings. I pray to cling to goodness and holiness and to maintain control over my Yetzer HaRa, my inclination towards destructiveness. Every hour provides more opportunities to test the strength of my connection to Splendor. Every day, I pray to fortify the foundation of splendor a bit more earthquake-proof.
How do you manifest splendor in your daily life?
Previously on this day in the Omer
34 days of the Omer 5778 / 2018: Making time on a daily basis for soul-nourishing, spirit-enhancing activities.
24 days of the Omer 5777 / 2017: Leaving a transdenominational rabbinical student retreat; praying to hold onto the wisdom learned.