Omer – Day 32
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 shloshim ve shtayim laOmer shehem arba’a shavuot ve arba’a yammim laOmer.
Today is day thirty two of the Omer, which is four weeks and four days of the Omer.
hod be hod – gratitude within gratitude; appreciation within appreciation; humility within humility.
Religion – religion is good. It reminds me who I am – I’m just one of thousands singing this blessing to God. On the other hand, I’m someone who can sing to God! It lets me see the me wihin myself, as it reminds me to look through the trapping of the everyday and into the trappings of the thousands of years. By framing it with ritual and tradition, religion makes that look inside slightly less scary.
Religion is a lot of fun, too. There’s not much else that could get wildly different people to sing, tell stories, wave palm fronds, make and light candles, wave incense, try weird fruits, discuss death, drink wine, tell jokes, dress up, blow horns, invite ghosts to visit, dance with books, dance with chairs, burn bread, break bread, break glasses, eat ice-cream, gamble, make noise, play hide-and-seek, paint or draw, write, read, learn new languages and of course count together. Religion does all that and more! Build houses? Ask questions? There are times for that! (If anyone asks me about one, I’ll be happy to name the holiday and ritual that the activity involves.) How cool is that?
Today, within the gratitude I feel towards others, I encounter the gratitude I feel to God. Thanks, God, for letting me be Jewish – and for making Judaism so much fun!