This is a wonderful time in the Jewish calendar. A period of introspection, an opportunity to return to our senses, to ask forgiveness -- of self, others, the breath of life. To clean the slates and to move on. This, to me, is Rosh Hashanah.
On the first day of the two-day festival, we read in the Torah portion selected for this day the sin of Sarah, one of four foremothers. Implicated in her sin is the father of two great nations — Abraham. According to the Nahmanides (Ramban), Sarah sinned when she treated her maid Hagar abusively. And Abraham sinned by letting it happen.
Dare to ask yourself: How do I regard and treat people of different groups, social strata, habits, customs, ideas, or orientation? Is it with dignity and respect for all chips off The Block of Being? Or do I resemble Sarah or Abraham, in this reading? Am I an abuser? Or a passive, willing bystander?
All this reflection and action business is a lot to think about, and it is a gift of this period in the Jewish calendar to have such reminders.
Wishing everyone in the coming year— health, sanity, learning, giving, and occasions to dance, sing, comfort, heal, laugh, remember, praise, and bless.
(I first published this post on September 12, 2007.)
My related posts
- May the [Jewish] New Year and its blessings start תָּחֵל שָׁנָה וּבִרְכוֹתֶיהָ
- "Have you a sweet year"
- Shanah Tovah! Country on a String
- L'Shanah Tovah, Happy New Year 5768: On this day, the world was conceived.