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...and just like that, real life started

Friday, 4 November, 2016 - 7:39 am

...and just like that, real life started.

The month of Tishrei has come to a close and with it the Holidays seem like a distant memory. We're quickly thrown into the month of Cheshvan - a month without any holidays. So much so that the month has earned a prefix - Mar = Bitter, because of its holiday deficiency.

At the same time the Torah portion of the first week of Cheshvan is Noach which is quite the dreary story. It's hard to come off the high and right into the routine of life with this intense drop.

Indeed, this is the intention. As spiritually fulfilling as the High Holidays are and as joyous as Sukkos  was, life is lived in a different space. It is lived in the dreary space. The purpose is to change the dreariness into light. To chase away the clouds, get rid of the rain and bring forth the sun and rainbow.

In its own interesting way the story of Noach and the Ark teaches us this as well.

The Midrash tells us that the experience on the Ark was Messianic, with the wolf lying with the lamb. It had a sense of the Garden of Eden. So much so, that Noach needed a specific command to "leave the ark".

The Ark paralleled the wonderful days of the month of Tishrei with all its profound holiness and joy. Ultimately, however we must leave the ark and enter into the regular world to rebuild and bring light into the dark places.

But there is hope! Abraham is born at the end of this Parsha. And with Abraham's birth we are assured that all of our work will pay off. We will accomplish what we were sent to this earth for and we will return to the holy state of the Ark and the profoundly spiritual experiences of the previous month.

But when we return, we will return as experienced travelers! In here lies the secret of the journey, the secret of integrating the experience into the path!

Good Shabbos,

Rabbi Kushi Schusterman 


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