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I want to be induced!

Friday, 1 May, 2020 - 8:06 am

On Wednesday Menny turned seven with a party for the books. Thirty plus members of our Jewish community, classmates from Longfellow along with Menny’s teacher Ms. Garton, friends from around town and Gallatin County’s Sheriff Brian Gootkin with a team of deputies all drove along Huffman Lane to surprise Menny and bless him with good wishes for his big day (see video here). It was special, really touching; we adapted to the Covid-19 situation and created an induction of joy and fun for all. So many of those driving by commented how grateful they were that we did this, “it was so much fun”, “it’s great to be here with others”, “so glad to see you guys”; all while following the distancing recommendations.

In this week’s double Torah portion, Acharei-Kedoshim, we read about the priestly service on Yom Kippur in the Holy Temple. Every move the Kohen Gadol made was detail oriented: what he ate and drank in the days prior to Yom Kippur, where he slept, who spent the nights with him, when and where he immerses in the Mikvah, what offerings he sacrificed on the alter, what clothing he wore at which time of the service and how he celebrated, along with Jewry, upon reaching atonement at the end of Yom Kippur. Judaism recognizes that though inspiration comes from within the depth of our soul, the atmosphere around us, can help induce the needed feeling for the day.

We are all struggling as we journey through this new reality. Kids are yearning for school, parents are yearning for a quiet moment, businesses are yearning for income, employees are yearning for a paycheck and everyone I know is yearning for “normal”. Amid all this, it’s easy for us to fall into the trap of despair, depression and hopelessness; on some days, I feel that way too. Yet, Menny’s birthday reminded me that simple things can change that mood, by intentionally creating an atmosphere of joy, positivity and optimism. Find a good excuse, a birthday, anniversary, graduation, new home, or anything else you can think of, and throw a party. Whether online, via a drive-through or by meeting in your front lawn 20 feet apart, see, and interact, with fellow humans who you love and you will cheer up.

Create the tone; the change of heart will follow!

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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