The Heart of Heaven

V’etchanan
Deuteronomy 3:23 - 7:11

When we form a covenantal relationship, some kind of mystery happens and even as we retain our own identities, we also form something new that only exists within that relationship. In that relationship, perhaps we reside in the leiv hashamayim– in the interior, the center, of the expanse. The heart of the heavens. 

Read More
Our Brother's Keepers

CHUKAT NUMBERS 19:1 – 22:1

We thought that when God said, “It is not good for human beings to be alone,” (Genesis 2:18) God responded by creating a couple. What the Karen people understand, and we would do well to learn, is that God didn’t stop with that couple. God created us to be family.

Read More
I Wanna Hold Your Hand

BEHA'ALOT'CHA: NUMBERS 8:1 - 12:16

When someone is ill, we go beyond the letter of the law. We find them where they are. We learn what they need and we do something about it. We join them . . . nothing fancy. We just . . . join them. And we reach out with a hand and with others we catch them, or we take on some of their weight. We hold them. El na refa na la.

Read More
For the Love of a Butterfly

BEHAR - BECHUKOTAI: LEVITICUS 25:1 - 27:34

If we refuse to be alert to the needs of the earth, the earth will refuse to be alert to ours. The wolves also must eat. So must the spiders. And the mosquitoes. And the butterflies. There is a time and place for new understandings of ancient texts. If ever there were such a time, it is now.

*Note: I know that’s not a monarch in that picture!

Read More
Patterns

ACHREI MOT & KEDOSHIM (Leviticus 16:1 - 20:27)

Everything we have ever been as a people informs who we are and who we will become, but it isn’t predictive. We aren’t made to be predictable. We are created b’tzelem Elohim, in the image of God, holy because God is holy, made to be . . . creative. We hold our tradition and our traditions close, but we have also survived because we have embraced changes.  

Read More
What's In A Name

VAYACHEL-PEKUDEI (EXODUS 35:1−40:38)

My perception of Vayachel-Pekudei is forever shaped by my memories of a young woman developing her voice and claiming her own style of leadership, of the sweet, plump cheeks of a baby who needed to come in his own time – even though some of us worried that it was maybe a little early, of his mother’s hand on the top of his big brother’s head, and of his father’s intense and loving eyes gazing down at him.

With his parents’ permission, I share with you the words I shared with him.

Read More