Cheshbon HaNefesh

by Arliene Botnick, October 22, 2014

An Accounting of our Souls!

As we neared the Yamim Noraim, it was traditional that we did an ethical “stocktaking” – really examining what we had done and said over the past year in order to atone for any wrong doings and be prepared and resolved to do better in the coming year.

In assessing “our souls” we were also assessing our identities, who we are, why we are here, our relationships to our family, our community, our synagogue, Israel and our relationship with God – Heavy stuff!

I’d like to suggest, that this year in particular, some of these relation-ships really need to be examined. Our synagogue has, for the first time in 41 years, a new Rabbi who will be guiding us and leading us over the course of the next year and helping us transition to a new permanent Rabbi. This is a great time to meet Rabbi Bogosian, get to know her and relate to her as our interim Rabbi.

Our relationship with Solel also needs to be examined. Solel is our Jewish Community home, the place we can pray together, talk together, celebrate together and of course, eat together. Solel needs all of us to stay committed and involved!

This year, a close look at our relationship with Israel has to be part of our tabulation. This has been a most difficult, frightening time in the Middle East with missiles flying, sirens sounding, lives lost. We need – Israel needs – peace. How can we help make this happen? What positive steps can we take in achieving a democratic, safe, state for the Jewish people and respect for all peoples in the Middle East who want security, freedom and a homeland.

And finally, how we relate to God? This final relationship is an ongoing challenge for all of us. No one else can define it, or prescribe how it works. For almost each one of us, God is somewhere on our radar; we just may not always be sure of where or how or when. We just have to keep looking at the radar screen.

So for now, I only want to encourage Cheshbon HaNefesh and wish you all a wonderful “Solel” year.


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