Today is DAY THIRTEEN, which makes ONE WEEK and SIX DAYS of the Omer.
Torah for Today Cantor Sarah Silverberg
Part of the difficulty in counting the Omer (particularly this year, when it’s hard to distinguish one day from the next) is keeping track of which day to count. Is today day 3 or day 17 or day 39? Today is the 86th day of April, right?
There is a wonderful resource called "Ritualwell" which looks at all aspects of life and provides thousands of resources for Jewish rituals like lifecycle events, healing and hard times, holidays, Shabbat, and every day holiness. It’s a great website to browse through. In an effort to bring more meaning to my counting of the Omer, I went to look and see what ideas Ritualwell might have to offer. I really connected with a ritual presented by Rabbi Margaret Holub, who suggested reflecting on themes of the kabbalistic values and virtues for each day of the Omer.
We are currently in the second week of counting the Omer, and this week’s theme is "gevurah," which Rabbi Holub translated as "strength, limits". She says, “We focus on the middah [value] of HARITZUT — decisiveness. ‘All of your acts should be preceded by deliberation; when you have reached a decision, act without hesitating’…day 13 Look at HOW you make a decision - be methodical.” It takes a lot of inner strength to not only make a thoughtful decision, but to look at the process behind making that choice. We make a million choices a day. What value would it add to our lives if we thought more intentionally about one or two of them? Some of them are small; what should I eat for lunch today? Some of the decisions carry more weight; Should I go to the grocery store today or try and wait a few more days before venturing out in public? Whether a big decision or small, taking time to think through the answer is important. And then once you reach the decision, commit to it. It’s not easy and takes a quiet inner strength. Try and see how it feels on this 13th day of the Omer.
If you would like to try this themed daily ritual for counting the omer, you can explore more here.
*NEW NEXT WEEK*
Managing Anxiety During the Pandemic
with Dr. Tara Sager
Wednesday, 4/29, 8:30pm
Check your daily email for how to attend
Come join us for an informal and interactive discussion about managing anxiety during the pandemic. Dr. Tara Sager will discuss symptoms and ways to cope with anxiety during these challenging times. An interactive Q&A and discussion will follow. Dr. Sager is a member of Kol Dorot, mom of three young boys, and parent in both our Religious School and Early Learning Center. She is a licensed clinical psychologist in private practice in Cresskill (and currently via telehealth). Check out her website at www.drtarasager.com.
In Case You Missed It
Many programs were held online yesterday in honor of Yom HaShoah. Here are two we highly recommend:
1) United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, "2020 Days of Remembrance Commemoration"
2) Museum of the Jewish Heritage, "New York's Annual Gathering of Remembrance"