Glue, tikkun

broken clay pot with clover

broken clay pot with clover (Photo credit: pberry041655)

An old story says that when God first let his light shine in the chaos of the new universe, the universe shattered wherever the light came in. And so we live in a shattered world and life is a constant effort to glue the pieces of the world back together.

But it’s by dealing with the cracks that I grow. I learn from my failures in everything from studying math to learning again and again how to be a mother — this time, how to be a mother to a young man who has now a wife and home of his own.

Possibly the strangest lesson that I have learned from gluing the bits of my life together into a whole is that the cracks between pieces, the cracks where the glue is, are the most valuable. Tikkun: an old Hebrew word for this repairing, is what keeps the world going from day to day. It is how I learn that being what I am is enough.

Like Leonard Cohen said,

“There is a crack in everything — that’s how the light gets in.”

Five Minute Friday


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No rapture

How to think of the believers in the ersatz Rapture? I feel sorry for them, but only a little bit. They’re adults and entitled to make ridiculous spiritual choices. I’ve made a few of those myself.

Ridicule? It’s so very hard not to. And there are, of course, serious things going on all the time that actually require our attention and efforts; the tornado in Joplin MO is the first thing that comes to mind.

What I am left with, though, is worry for those whose lives were damaged by the people who believed in the nonsense rapture: the children of those people who spent their college funds on billboard signs, the mother who didn’t make plans for the baby she is about to have and whom she thought she would never see.

I wish there was a way to hold people responsible when their idiocy damages others.


Catholic bishops behaving deceitfully: what a surprise

A major objection I have always had about Christianity and Catholicism is their constant attempts to shove their beliefs down the throats of those who believe otherwise. In the following, it’s blatantly obvious that the bishops were taking advantage of a good-faith effort by Jewish leaders.

NEW YORK – Major Jewish groups and rabbis from the three largest branches of American Judaism said Thursday that their relationship with Roman Catholic leaders is at risk because of a recent U.S. bishops’ statement on salvation.

Jewish groups said they interpret the new document to mean that the bishops view interfaith dialogue as a chance to invite Jews to become Catholic. The Jewish leaders said they “pose no objection” to Christians sharing their faith, but said dialogue with Jews becomes “untenable” if the goal is to persuade Jews to accept Christ as their savior.

via U.S. Jews protest Catholic document – Faith-

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Sustained wonder — qotd

This is the meaning of a Jew and Judaism, the very meaning of the word: To live in a state of sustained wonder. To know that there are things beyond human grasp. That the very existence of anything at all is beyond knowing. And then to strive to know.

— Menachem Mendel Schneerson, the Lubavitcher Rebbe

Enough about depressing things

You do learn to say that to yourself, and I think this is a major step forward for a cancer survivor. I know I had to say it today several times before the small moth-like anxieties fled.

Then there was a horrible show that I slurped right up on E! TV about stars’ mental problems. I felt so home there with Gwyneth Paltrow going through the “baby blues” as they’ve come to be called. I can just imagine us hittin’ back on the Prozac, side by side. …..Not, but it did the trick.

I’m now in command of my self…. All dressed up and nowhere to go.

Now playing on iTunes: The Unanswered Question from the album “Kosmos” by Isao Tomita

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Spring and Easter at last

Easter arrives cold and gray, just like it usually does around these parts. I figure that the weather is here to spite the fact that at least one of my daffodils has bloomed, and my friend up the street’s orange crocuses are in full flower. Nevertheless, spring is officially here now, with Easter, according to my personal calendar. And fun must be had. Too bad that Peter, at 22, is too old for an easter egg hunt.

What do I propose to do today? I may slink off to church for an actual service. Yes, for those who have been paying attention, that’s not something I’d normally do, which would be to figure out if I have any chametz left in the house.

Current state of soul right now: undefined, of inconclusive directions, given the clues available. That’s usually the state of things, though, when the rabbi you’ve been working with for years turns out to have been a crazy, mixed up, lying little bugger all along.

But enough about me… How is your day shaping up so far?