Sunday, August 19, 2012

Elul 1/Aug 19

The month of Elul precedes the High Holidays. Its 28 days are meant as a time for introspection, learning and growth. Judaism teaches that we don’t just walk into the Rosh Hashanah service, all ready to go. Elul is a ‘warm-up’ time, allowing us to spiritually stretch ourselves to prepare for the intensity (and joy) of Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur.

Starting on the first day of Elul and continuing through the end of the month, there will be a daily post here on this blog that is pertinent to this month of introspection. Each posting will have a brief thought on the topic of preparing for the High Holy Days, and each thought will be paired with a tweet using the hashtag #elul5772.

The postings this Elul represent the collaboration of Rabbi Bradley G. Levenberg of Temple Sinai in Atlanta, GA; Rabbi Eric Linder of Congregation Children of Israel in Athens, GA; Rabbi Jason Nevarez of Temple Shaaray Tefila in Bedford Corners, NY; and Rabbi David N. Young of Temple Sinai in Miami, FL.  Together we hope to provide our respective congregations with 28 opportunities for growth during this introspective time.

Elul 1, 5772:
 We are used to judging by endings. We focus on a person's last days, or on the bad breakup, or the final inning that determines the game. But most of life is not the end and if there was joy in the journey, arias and intoxications, let us try to embrace that time. We are not defined by the last, but by all.

Let us consider the good that we have done prior to this year, how we have impacted those around us in positive ways.  Perhaps we introduced a couple, or mended broken fences, or inspired positive living in others.  Now may we seek to connect, over phone or email orFacebook or even in person with one of those people.

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