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Celebrating you!

Thursday, 30 September, 2021 - 11:16 pm

We just wrapped up an incredible holiday season packed with services, communal meals, celebrations and Mitzvos galore. From Shofar on Main Street to Kol Nidrei in the new center, from Sushi in the Sukkah to Simchat Torah dancing into the night, it was like living on a different galaxy, imbued with holiness, meaning and tradition. Touching me deeply was the individuality: the MSU student who made it to part of Kol Nidrei, the mom with a struggling baby who made it to Ne’ila, the woman in her 80’s with a priceless smile in our inaugural Sukkah mobile and the Iraq war veteran who danced with melodious soulfulness during Hakafos.

In this week’s Torah portion, Bereishis, the first in Genesis, we read of Adam’s creation. The Talmud teaches that G-d chose to create the first human alone so that we learn that “anyone who destroys a human life is considered as if he had destroyed an entire world, and anyone who preserves a human life is considered to have preserved an entire world." If we’d been created in groups, we would lack the appreciation for the uniqueness of each individual, we’d lump fellow humans into groups or categories, we’d commercialize human beings, which would be tragic.

George Carlin once said, “I often warn people, somewhere along the way, someone is going to tell you, 'There is no 'i' in team.' What you should tell them is, 'Maybe not—but there is an 'i' in independence, individuality, and integrity.” Teamwork is vital, community is precious, marriage can be the greatest blessings, but it all starts with Adam, one individual who Is independently worthy of G-d’s time and can bring about, through their specialness, a real dose of good to our fractured world.

Celebrate you, G-d thinks you’re awesome!

May G-d guard our brethren in Israel and the world over from harm and send us Mashiach speedily. May G-d protect the armed forces of Israel and the United States wherever they may be. Shabbat Shalom! Chazak!!! L'Chaim!!!

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