Elul – Day 39

Posted by on Oct 7, 2019 | 0 comments

remember, this is from Orthodoxy….allow the Ruach haKodesh to sift through the words, and speak to your heart… Tishrei 9, Erev Yom Kippur TO BE LIKE ANGELS Tonight we will begin a 25-hour fast of Yom Kippur.  We don’t do this in order to afflict ourselves, which is the purpose of the fast of Tisha B’Av when we mourn the destruction of the Temple—indeed Yom Kippur is not a day of mourning but a day of joy. We fast on Yom Kippur because on this day we want to transcend our physical limitations and be like angels, and food and other physical concerns distract us from our...

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Elul – Day 37

Posted by on Oct 5, 2019 | 0 comments

Tishrei 7 THE CYCLE OF FORGIVENESS Yom Kippur, which is only three days away, is called the “Day of Forgiveness” because this is the day when Moses, after pleading with G-d for 80 days to forgive the Israelites for the Sin of the Golden Calf, finally succeeded.  On this day, G-d finally said to him: “I will forgive as you have asked.” On Yom Kippur we seek to connect to the energy of this awesome day and win forgiveness for ourselves as well.  But we can hardly expect to be forgiven by G-d if we ourselves have not been willing to forgive others. Forgiveness is not...

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Elul – Day 36

Posted by on Oct 4, 2019 | 0 comments

APPROACHING THE SOURCE We have now reached the midpoint of the Ten Days of Teshuvah. This is the period, say the sages of the Talmud, of which the Prophet Isaiah (55:6) speaks when he proclaims: “Seek G-d when He is to be found; call on Him when He is near.” This might seem like an odd statement because we are taught that G-d is omnipresent at all times and all places in the world. How could we say that now He is closer to us? But Isaiah is not speaking from G-d’s perspective but from the soul’s perspective. Chassidic teachings explain that this special time of the...

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Elul Day 35

Posted by on Oct 2, 2019 | 0 comments

Tishrei 5 THE PERSONAL HOLY OF HOLIES Before the destruction of the Temple in Jerusalem, the pinnacle of the Yom Kippur service was the moment when the High Priest (the Kohen Gadol) would enter the Holy of Holies. This was the only time of the year that anyone could enter this holiest of inner sanctums and only the High Priest was permitted to do so and only for a short duration. It was such an intense moment that if the High Priest was not completely pure—if he had committed even one transgression for which had had not previously atoned—he would die immediately. This was because the Holy of...

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Elul Day 33

Posted by on Oct 1, 2019 | 0 comments

REBUILDING THE KINGDOM Today begins the countdown to Yom Kippur.  Today is the third day of the Ten Days of Teshuvah, which will culminate on this most awesome of days. This is possibly the most intense time in the Hebrew calendar when each individual is granted the power of a group of ten. We are vested with this power because in these ten days, having crowned G-d as our King, we now undertake the task of rebuilding His kingdom—both in the spiritual realm “above” and in our world “below”—known in the language of Kabbalah as Binyan HaMalchut. Malchut...

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Elul – Day 31

Posted by on Sep 30, 2019 | 0 comments

Tishrei 2, Second Day of Rosh Hashana   THE DAY OF CORONATION   The idea of Rosh Hashana as the day when we “coronate” G-d as the King of the Universe, may be one of the strangest and hardest to accept for those of us raised in modern, democratic societies. To us kings are corrupt despots at worst, and characters out of fairy tales at best. Yet this idea is essential to the observance of Rosh Hashana, because in the language of Judaism a king is a metaphor for absolute authority. On Rosh Hashana we accept upon ourselves G-d as the one and only absolute authority who rules over...

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