I enjoyed many trips to Nationals Park this summer to watch the Washington Nationals play, and I’ve been thinking a lot about baseball, our national pastime. I grew up with a love of the game because my dad is a diehard Chicago White Sox fan.
I’ve come to the conclusion we need to change the date of Simchat Torah. Our Jewish festivals must be re-envisioned as inspirational community gatherings of joyful spiritual Jewish celebration. Every single festival needs to be a time of great community involvement and meaning.
Turn the Torah scroll.
Turn back to Genesis
for the Rosh Hashana reading.
As the Torah scroll is rolled,
one person is on one side
pulling forward -
back to the beginning.
One person is on the other side
releasing the past.
Every morning I wake up at 5:30. Rolling over, I grab my computer and check Twitter, Tumblr, my blog, and make sure I remembered to do all my homework.
Shabbat Shuvah is the Sabbath between Rosh HaShanah and Yom Kippur. The name is derived from the opening word of the haftarah reading that urges us: Shuvah Yisrael ad Adonai Elohecha, “Return, O Israel, to the Eternal your God.”
In the book of Nehemiah (chapter 8), we find a description of an ancient Rosh HaShanah at the time of rebuilding Israel after a period of exile.
Rosh HaShanah, the Jewish new year, is a wonderful time to assess the past year and consider what we hope to achieve, spiritually speaking and otherwise, in the year to come.