Omer – Day 10
Barukh ata Adonay, Eloheynu Melekh ha-olam, asher kid’shanu b’mitzvotav v’zivanu al s’firat haOmer.
Blessed be the Eternal God, Ruler of the universe, who makes us holy through Mitzvot and has commanded us to count the Omer.
Hayom yom eser laOmer shehem shavua ehad ve shlosha yammim laOmer.
Today is day ten of the Omer, which is one week and three days of the Omer.
Tiferet be Gevura – beauty within strength; balance within limits
We push ourselves. We have no choice, really. There are tasks to do and reports to write and goals to accomplish. From the time we’re very little and we get our first bit of homework or realize that if we want to play saxophone we have to practice (as well as putting down the ducky,) we have things to do. “Get off your lazy butt,” we tell ourselves. “Do the next thing. Stop wasting time on that frivolous nonsense.” We are right to do so. The stuff needs to get done. Today, however, there’s a reminder that somewhere in all that, there’s a beauty for us to notice in the world. We need to balance the to-do lists with a moment of “hey, I want to hang out with a friend,” or “maybe it’s time to watch a movie” or “let’s sing”. Those are also essential, high-priority items on our to-do list that have to be given their own koved, respect.
In fact, when we slip that balance into our to-do lists – when writing the Omer posts becomes an important to-do item – we realize that all our to-do items have balance in them. Practising saxophone is also beautiful and fun, and washing the dishes is warm and clean. On the other hand, sometimes we need to have strength to make ourselves sing or hang out with someone, rather than just keep doing the boring but very simple housework or paperwork. When we use strength and see beauty, we create a balance that makes our to-do lists holy.
To quote from a loved poet (Robert Frost),
“But yield who will to their separation,
My object in living is to unite
My avocation and my vocation
As my two eyes make one in sight.
Only where love and need are one,
And work is play for mortal stakes,
Is the deed ever really done
For Heaven and the future’s sakes.”
Today, may all my work be done for Heaven and the future’s sakes.