Rosh HaShannah

apples and honey,
sweeten the New Year’s advent;
Rosh HaShannah bliss.

As Rosh HaShannah, the New Year on the Hebrew calendar approaches, I prepare my soul, so that I might be able to stand before the King on Judgment Day. Selichos (the penitential prayers) have already begun; these prayers will continue, until the eve of the Day of Judgment, when all the world is judged, and decrees are made for the New Year. Yet, charity, prayer, and repentance have the effect of lessening the severity of any negative decrees placed upon us.

The two days of Rosh HaShannah are said, according to the Zohar, to symbolically represent a day of judgment, and a day of mercy, resting upon G-d’s attributes of both justice and mercy. Because the world could not survive upon being judged without mercy. Justice alone would bring harsh condemnation upon all the earth, for no one is able to sincerely live 100% by G-d’s standard; everyone falls short of the mark to varying degrees, because of our “human nature,” as some say, inherited by Adam and Eve, who disobeyed G-d, even while living in Gan Eden (Paradise). So, mercy has a sweetening effect upon our judgment, so that we can be reconciled to G-d.

Fountain

“For with Thee is the fountain of life.”

– Psalm 36:10, JPS 1917 Tanach

An ever-flowing,

effervescent stream,

silently, empties itself

into every clay vessel,

filling us with all

that we may drink in,

from the Source of life.

~~~~~ ~~~~~ ~~~~~

Only our refusal to receive

from the eternal faucet of Spirit,

will limit Your chesed

in our lives.

poem: Direction

Photo by Raul Petri on Unsplash

There is only One who is good,
our Father in Heaven, Who looks
down upon us with a benevolent gaze.

Not that our limited perception
can always comprehend the intention
of His guidance in our lives.

Nor, may we perceive
the immediate benefit
of the direction He points.

Yet, He will always be merciful to us,
even though we may be wounded
along the way we are shown to take.

poem: The Plea

Photo by Aloïs Moubax from Pexels

The ebb and flow of life,
already curtailed by the plague;
normalcy continues to diminish,
when strife adds fuel to the fire.

Nowhere in sight,
nor in the news is the story
told of the plight, common to all of us.
Factions, divisions, and arguments
seem to prevail, in this arena
of strife, contention, and accusations:
a medley of disunity, instead
of a harmony of opposites.

Everyone needs to breathe fresh air,
and ponder upon the big picture,
because we’re all in this together,
pleading in our hearts for mercy,
if not from man, then from G-d Above.