In Our Virtual Mishkan, Reflections: Rabbi Zachary Goodman

Jewish Time

In the first few weeks of becoming a father, I have found that I never really know what time it is. Did the baby feed 5 minutes ago or has it been hours? The sun is down… should we be getting in bed soon or should I be making coffee? To a new parent, time is an elusive construct that barely exists. In the last few months, many people have expressed how challenging it can be to keep track of the days. Have we been living with this pandemic for 4 months, 7 months or what seems likes years? It is in these moments where we can rely on the Jewish calendar to keep us grounded.

Shabbat has always been a constant for our people. In the words of the pre-state Zionist thinker, Echad Ha’am, “More than the Jews have kept Shabbat, Shabbat has kept the Jews.” This statement is perhaps more true today than when he penned it. I am also incredibly moved by the words of Rabbi David Polish, who writes:

Where has this week vanished?

Is it lost forever? Will I ever recover anything from it?
The Joy of life, the unexpected victory,
The realized hope, the task accomplished?
Will I ever be able to banish the memory of pain,
 the sting of defeat, the heaviness of boredom?
On this day let me keep for a while what must drift away.
On this day let me be free of the burdens that must return.
On this day, Shabbat, abide.

And now Shabbat has come,
Can it help me to withdraw for a while
From the flight of time?
Can it contain the retreat of the hours and days from the grasp of a frantic life?
When all days abandon me, Shabbat, abide.

Let me learn to pause, if only for this day.
Let me find peace on this day.
Let me enter into a quiet world this day.
On this day, Shabbat, abide.

One of the great pleasures of being a Jewish person is celebrating together. Whether that means attending a Zoom wedding or showing up for a virtual Shabbat service. As one of Holy Blossom’s newest young families, I am so excited to take part in the incredible learning and worship opportunities that Holy B has to offer. If you are interested in joining or know a young family who might want to be included, please take a look at the links below for all the upcoming events:

Looking forward to seeing you there!

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  • Marilyn Hahn

    Mazel Tov on the birth of your baby.
    I wish you all a lifetime of happiness and good health.
    Marilyn Hahn
    Monday Seniors

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