An Elul Expedition — The King In the Field

KiF-2
“The King In the Field” — An Elul Expedition

The metaphor for the space of God-connection on Rosh Hashanah is “the palace.” The “palace” is a most special experience, separate from ordinary life, a place of special holiness, a place we don’t enter casually. We prepare as best we can, physically and spiritually. We do our best to be worthy, and where we fall short, we pray for compassion and forgiveness.

Elul is different. The metaphor for the God-connection space is “the field.” During Elul, our sages teach, “the King is in the field.” The “field” is the material space where we live our ordinary lives. Teshuvah — returning. During Elul, God is doing teshuvah! Returning to us to meet us in the field.

Our challenge during Elul: to meet God’s teshuvah with our own. But where and how do we find God in the field? Is it when we take the opportunity to do an act of kindness for another person? Is it how we notice with gratitude when someone does an unexpected act of kindness for us? Is it when we see a beautiful flower, or the smile on the face of a child, or stop to listen to a bird sing? Is it all of the above?

So here’s my invitation: What if we could stay in touch during the month of Elul and share some of our experiences of meeting “the King in the Field?” What if we can each strengthen our teshuvah practice by learning from each other?

This is a space for sharing our experiences, during the month of Elul, of meeting the King in the Field. And for sharing our learning.

On any day of Elul, we invite you to Post a Comment below, about your personal encounter with the King in the Field. We also invite you to see the comments of the other friends who are sharing the journey, and share your personal responses to what they have said.

Most of all, we invite you to share this journey of our Torah Circle community!

35 thoughts on “An Elul Expedition — The King In the Field

  1. Aryae Post author

    I’m getting ready for this journey, to head out to field and see where the King is waiting. I don’t know what will happen, and feel in a state of not knowing. I’m inviting friends to join me, but I don’t yet know if anyone will. Ready to put one foot in front of the other, and see what emerges.

    Reply
  2. Aryae Post author

    “God in the field” showed up for me yesterday in the beautiful community of friends who came together for the Torah Circle. It was about sharing learning and prayer together. And it was especially about the gifts that people offered — like food, or like spontaneous acts to help, such as washing dishes and carrying down chairs at the end of the day. I very much felt held by our community.

    Reply
  3. Wendy

    Today, the first of Elul, I blew the shofar for the first time this year.
    This trumpeting heralding the Divine Presence does remind me that yes, God is in the field. It will remind me each day.

    Reply
  4. Jeremy

    Recently a friend was concerned about meeting God in the field, because she felt as if her divine sense bubbled up from within her, and was unsure how to tell if it was coming from God or if it was really just coming from her own psyche. It seems to me that meeting God in the field is precisely about realizing there is not a distinction between those ideas. That divine sense that bubbles up from within us, during meditation, a contemplative walk, prayer, or other times, comes from God because everything comes from God, as do we and everything within us.

    Reply
  5. Susan Diamond

    Sitting in silence, I heard the sounding of a shofar, returned to following my breath. Heard the words, I am waiting for you. When I opened my eyes at the end of my meditation, I knew G-d was in the field, and I couldn’t find G-d.

    Reply
  6. Steve

    “The ruler is in his palace, and all of his subjects are partly within the city and partly outside the city. Of those who are within the city, some have turned their backs on the ruler’s habitation, their faces being turned another way. Others seek to reach the ruler’s habitation, turn toward it and desire to enter and stand before him, but up to now they have not yet seen the wall of the habitation. Some of those who seek to reach it have come up to the habitation and walk around it searching for the gate. Some of them have entered the gate, and walk around in the antechambers. Some of them have entered the inner court of the habitation and have come to be with the king, in one and the same place with him, namely in the ruler’s habitation. But their having come into the inner part of the habitation does not mean that they see the ruler or speak to him. For after their coming into the inner part of the habitation, it is indispensable that they should make another effort; then they will be in the presence of the ruler, see him from afar or from nearby, or hear the ruler’s speech or speak to him.” (Maimonides, Guide for the Perplexed, 3:51)

    The Rambam’s parable about the ruler in the palace teaches us about the usual barriers to becoming closer to God. During Elul, as the King is in the Field, those barriers begin to fade–helping us to approach God.

    Reply
  7. Aryae Post author

    2 Elul

    Yesterday Wendy and I walked south along the Coastal Trail. We stopped at a very special tree.
    Teshuvah Tree
    I used to call it the Turnaround Tree, because it was where I would turn around on my walks and head back north. Lately, as Elul approached, I started calling it Teshuvah Tree.

    This tree has become our beloved friend. It feels so peaceful when we spend time with our friend.

    We bring our human time, walking south in the afternoon, resting briefly, then walking briskly back north so we can get home and prepare for dinner.

    Our friend lives his time differently. He waits, and others visit. People and dogs walk by on the trail. Birds fly overhead, then land and sing in his branches. It gets cold and damp as chilly winds blow in from the sea. People leave. The sun sets. Sounds of the fog horn echo through the night. Then the morning comes and sunlight hits the tops of his branches. People walk by with their dogs.

    Wendy and I said hello to the tree. We each found a comfortable place to lean our backs against his trunk, and rest our arms in his branches. We stayed a while, almost as still as Teshuvah Tree. We watched people walk by, and birds fly overhead, as the branches danced back and forth in little gusts of wind.

    I noticed that the King in the field was there too, enjoying the dancing branches.

    Reply
  8. Wendy

    Seeds to green

    Each spring I plant a cilantro cutting I get at the nursery. It lasts a few weeks and then goes to seed. I recently harvested a few seeds from the old spent plant and planted them in a small ceramic pot. Two of those seeds have sprouted, and I see miniature cilantro plants.

    This is the only time other than my etrog plants that I have grown anything from a seed. For me, this opens up experiencing the Divine through the stillness, the wholeness,
    and the Yesod of a seed.

    Reply
  9. Aryae Post author

    3 Elul

    Rambam:

    What is complete teshuvah? If an opportunity comes to your hand that caused you to act negatively in the past, and you choose to act differently this time.

    אי זו היא תשובה גמורה זה שבא לידו דבר שעבר בו ואפשר בידו לעשותו ופירש ולא עשה מפני התשובה לא מיראה ולא מכשלון

    Mishneh Torah

    Reply
  10. Aryae Post author

    Apple

    Last year our apple tree didn’t have any apples. This year, just a few.

    I was looking for God in the field yesterday, but nothing special caught my attention. Maybe the message is that everything is God in the field?

    Apple

    Then, in the evening, Wendy showed me a little apple she had picked from the tree, probably the next to last one this year. It was small and didn’t look so special. She cut it up into little slices.

    I said the blessing and tasted it. Wow — amazing! Really intense flavor: tart, zingy, and sweet at the same time. Unlike any apple I ever got at a store. Really special gift.

    Thank you God in the field! 🙂

    Reply
  11. Dan Howard

    Meeting the Queen in the Field

    I am passionate about drumming in community and recently began leading drum circles in elder care facilities as part of my ongoing musical ministry.

    On Sundays, I often join a West African drumming group in a local park, led by a friend from Ghana. I was very much looking forward to drumming this week, but discovered that the group was canceled.

    For a short time I was forlorn, feeling glum that I would not get my community rhythm fix. Then it dawned on me: Let’s see what happens if I go out and drum with my girlfriend, Nancy, just the two of us. I loaded several drums and small rhythm instruments in the car and took off for Todos Santos Plaza in Concord. Unloading the instruments, I observed that the park was full of young families and many children. Perfect!

    Nancy and I set up near the playground and began drumming. Very soon we observed people around us dancing, even the teenaged skater boys. We noticed a young olive-skinned girl, about eight years old, on a large blanket with her family. She was dancing but seemed very shy. We invited her to join us and she reluctantly walked over. That’s when the miracle began.

    Her name was Sophia and she told us that she was in the third grade. She also shared that she wanted to learn to play piano and guitar, but had received no musical training in school. Sophia began drumming with us and we soon discovered that she was a natural, perhaps even a musical savant. She floated on the wave of the rhythms and was totally with us when the drum beats become faster and more syncopated. When invited, Sophia even led us in some drum rhythms of her own device. The more we drummed together, the more radiant became that round, beaming face. We were now a community of rhythm, one heart, one spirit, one drum, jamming joyously.

    At my suggestion, Sophia invited her two sisters to join us. Now Jenny (11) is playing the tambourine while Angelina (4) is shaking the maracas and now we are a family band. The girls’ aunt and uncle. who speak very little English, look on from their blanket in delight. With no formal musical training, Sophia is now leading us, wearing an angelic countenance, flying free, totally unafraid, totally allowing the music to take her away.

    As our little drum circle comes to a close, we are astounded that we had jammed for a full hour. Where did the time go? That kind of thing happens when you encounter The Queen in the Field.

    – Dan Howard

    Reply
  12. Diane Elliot

    The Birth of Teshuvah, or The Torah of Second Chances
    by Rabbi Diane Elliot

    Despite Abraham’s pleading with God, S’dom and Amora ultimately don’t get a second chance.

    Adam and Eve didn’t get a second chance.

    Noah wasn’t changed by his second chance.

    One could say that there are two core practices in Judaism. The first, Shabbat, reflects the unfolding rhythm of Divine Creation—on the seventh day God rests—and is revealed to the Israelite people even before Moses ascends Sinai, before the Aseret Hadibrot, the Ten Commandments, are heard.

    The other, Teshuvah, is demonstrated by God between the giving of the first and second set of tablets.

    For the original Torah is shattered by Moses when he descends the mountain and sees the people dancing around the Golden Calf. The second set, which we might call the Teshuvah edition of Torah, will be inscribed by Moses’ hand, not God’s, amended, we can only surmise, to take into account the humanity of humans.

    This second Torah will be a Torah that has to have room for fear, for clinging and greed, a Torah that includes not only God’s story and the stories of God’s chosen prophets, but all of our stories, as we swing daily, sometimes hour by hour, breath by breath, between slavery and freedom.

    Up to this point in the Torah story, we’ve seen God in the guises of delighted Creator, demanding and hard-to-please Parent, willful and angry Manipulator, invincible Gladiator, stormy Miracle Worker, Divine Taskmaster, Harsh Judge. But we’ve not yet seen God as compassionate, loving parent, tender guardian, or watchful shepherd.

    Sages teach that the Nameless Name, Y H V H, comes to convey the flavor not of awe or power or judgment, but of love, the possibility of intimacy with the Divine. Moses says to God, “Show me your glory,” in effect asking, “Please show me the best of Who You Are, otherwise I can’t go forward with this thankless task of cat-herding!”

    And God assents, saying, “Carve out a second set of tablets. Then I’ll conceal you in a crevice of the rock”—namely, inside Me, for I am simultaneously both the One and the many—“and as I pass by, I’ll show you my back, for no human can see my face and live.”

    Moses does so, and God conceals him in the rock and at the moment God passes by, the text tells us, “He/he (who?) called out, ‘YHVH, YHVH, El Rakhum v’Khanun, Erekh Apayim, v’Rav Khesed v’Emet, Notzer Khesed l’Alafim, Nosey Avon va’Fesha v’Khta’ah, v’Nakei…. Nameless Oneness, Arising Compassion, Grace and Patience, Flowing Kindness and Truth, Stretching Love from Age to Age, Lifting Sin, Guilt, and Error, and Making Us Free…’ ”

    A midrash says that at this moment, after it had seemed all was lost, God wrapped Godself in God’s tallit and taught Moses how to pray. You could also say that at this moment, the Divine showed Moses how to do Teshuvah.

    Backward Turning Deer, A Prayer

    Living One,
    All That Is,
    like the deer
    who turns her head
    backward as she runs,
    turn back and see us,
    remember us.

    Reply
  13. Aryae Post author

    5 Elul

    Simplicity of the Heart

    At last night’s Santa Clara Awakin Circle, a weekly meditation gathering that I attend, the reading was from J. Krishnamurti, a passage called “Simplicity of the Heart.” In my understanding his message is paradoxical: we can’t attain true simplicity of the heart by desiring it and trying to do it. It has to come on it’s own.

    I was reminded of my little brother Ronald, who died at age 58 of lung cancer. He was diagnosed at a young age with schizophrenia. He spoke with angels and devils in ways that “ordinary” people don’t. I and other family members tried enlisting psychiatrists and therapists to “cure” him, but none of it worked, and eventually we all gave up. If he could live with the help of medications at a nice facility in relative peace and comfort, that would be enough.

    In his final years he lived in Florida, at a place called “Merriment Manor,” an assisted living facility where schizophrenia patients lived in little huts around a central eating and meeting hall. My brother and Paul and I were in charge of his finances.

    Each month Ronald wanted a lot of money for cigarettes, and for Coca Cola. I tried to encourage him to cut back on smoking, and maybe drink a little less soda. “Don’t you want to live a long time?” I asked. “That doesn’t matter too much to me,” he said. “When it’s my time to go, I’ll go.”

    “I advise backing off on his smoking,” his psychiatrist advised me. “With schizophrenics, they often have high levels of anxiety, and cigarettes are a way of self-medicating, of relaxing. It’s very hard to change that. And as far as the sodas go, it’s one of their small pleasures in life.”

    So I backed off, and sent him the ever increasing amounts he wanted each month for cigarettes and Cokes.

    After he passed away at the cancer ward at the hospital, I made a last visit to Merriment Manor to say goodbye to the staff & patients. Some patients came up to me and asked if I had any cigarettes or Cokes for them.

    “Why?” I said, “don’t you have your own money for that?”

    It was then that I learned what everyone who lived there knew: that if they ever ran out of money before the end of the month, they could always ask Ronald for a cigarette or a Coke. And as long as he had something for himself, he would never turn anyone down. He just didn’t have it in his heart to say no.

    What I realized last night: Ronald is my rebbe for simplicity of the heart. And the reason he possessed that gift was, it wouldn’t have occurred to him to try.

    As I realized this, I could see the King in the field smiling and nodding in the background.

    Reply
  14. Steve

    “A condition for doing teshuvah, according to the Rambam, is belief in teshuvah. Someone who does not believe that he can change his basic patterns of behavior or the structure of his personality will never succeed in doing so…

    “According to the Rambam, the fast of Yom Kippur was also instituted to reinforce our belief in the reality of teshuvah…”

    –Micah Goodman, “Maimonides and the Book That Changed Judaism”

    Reply
  15. Wendy

    The King is Literally in the Field

    I have been volunteering at Wildlife Associates by hanging out with 2 old and frail horses. Yesterday was a beautiful day on the coast, and they were more interested in grazing in the field than hanging out with me. So I sat under a tree and enjoyed watching the content horses and the beautiful surroundings.

    There is a wonderful feel to this land. Native Americans once lived there. I felt a cool breeze and watched the leaves of the trees fluttering in the wind. Shimmering white fluffy seeds like dandelions floated by. I pondered ways to be more loving.

    Reply
  16. Wendy

    Synchronicity in the Field

    Last Saturday, we went on a tour of the orchard at Filoli Gardens. This was scheduled about a month earlier. We were shown apple, pear, and quince trees and got a chance to pick and taste different varieties of the apples. There were also wild turkeys and deer. Some of us threw apples over the fence so that the deer could feast as well. I remembered that the Torah portion of the week was Shoftim. It includes the commandment that if you go to war, you are forbidden cut down fruit trees belonging to a city you are besieging. How perfect.

    Reply
  17. Dan Howard

    Shofarot

    I’m doing Qigong in the park
    barefoot in the thick grass
    as I listen to Pablo Casals play Bach’s cello suites
    It’s the last hour of late summer sunshine
    the light is warm and perfect

    All of a sudden I hear geese flying overhead
    in mystical glory, honking their hosannas
    a sweet cacophonous choir
    commanding my immediate attention
    Tekiah! Tekiah!

    – Dan Howard

    Reply
  18. Aryae Post author

    King in the Orchard

    When Wendy and I were at Filoli Gardens, we walked through the apple orchards. The docent explained how there used to be hundreds of beautiful varieties of apples, each with it’s own flavor, smell and appearance. Then corporate agribusiness came and bred a few varieties for commercial properties like shelf life. Agriculture changed, and most of us have never tasted of the hundreds of apples that exist in nature. Many of them are close to going extinct.

    “Here in this field we’re preserving the DNA,” the docent said. “We’re growing every variety we can find, caring for them year after year, offering them to visitors and the Second Harvest food bank. We want to be part of a modern day Johnny Appleseed.”

    We each got to pick apples we had never seen before, and taste them. It was amazing. I could imagine a different Garden of Eden, one where God says to Adam & Eve, “Don’t taste just from just that one apple tree my children. Look around you at the abundance of My creation, and taste it all in joy!”

    I look at all the rows of apple trees, each one a little different from the next, all from the same Creator, who loves them all. I can feel the King in the Field, enjoying His apple trees, smiling.

    Reply
  19. Steve

    We sense that when the King is in the Field, at least some barriers to approaching the King (God) are lowered. But which barriers are lowered?

    The Rambam says “He, however, who has achieved demonstration, to the extent that it is possible, of everything that may be demonstrated; and who has ascertained in divine matters, to the extent that it is possible, everything that may be ascertained; and who has come close to certainty in those matters in which one can only come close to it—has come to be with the ruler in the inner part of the habitation.” (Guide, 3:51)

    If those are the barriers when the King is in His Palace, which of then are lowered when He is in the Field?

    Is it the barrier of needing to “achieve demonstration, to the extent that it is possible, of everything that may be demonstrated”?

    Is it the barrier of needing to have “ascertained in divine matters, to the extent that it is possible, everything that may be ascertained”?

    Or is it the barrier of having to “come close to certainty in those matters in which one can only come close to it”?

    Which barriers are opened for us —when the King is in the Field–which allow us to “come to be with the ruler”?

    Which barriers do each of us need to be opened?

    L’shalom

    Reply
  20. Aryae Post author

    King in the Ocean

    Just an ordinary day going for our walk along the Coastal Trail. First we see the egret, still, delicate, patient.

    Later, further south, we see a dozen dolphins, playful, rollicking, in constant motion.

    How much more is there that we’re not seeing? And how much more is beyond our imagination?

    מה גדלו מעשיכה ׳׳
    מאד עמקו מחשותיך

    Mah gadlu ma’asecha Yah,
    m’od amku machsh’votecha.

    How great is Your creation Nameless One;
    how unfathomable is Your purpose in our lives!

    .

    Reply
  21. Wendy

    An Unlikely King in the Fields

    Yesterday at the local Fish and Fleet celebration at Princeton Harbor, I spotted a man wearing a tee shirt saying, “Vegetarians, my food pees on your food.” There was a picture of a deer peeing on plants.

    I was appalled at the content since I am an animal lover and mostly a vegetarian. Also, he seemed to be broadcasting that he was looking for a fight with someone whose life style contrasts with his. The aggressiveness of this stance felt very troubling to me. I fantasized walking up to him toe to toe and saying, “Yeah, I’m a vegetarian.” I restrained myself.

    When I got home I pondered my own anger about various things in my life. I also wondered about the possibility of communicating and even connecting with someone this angry with such a different lifestyle. Perhaps this is something that our country needs to figure out as well.

    Reply
  22. Aryae Post author

    Meditation on a Daily Teshuvah Blessing
    Amidah, 5th Blessing

    .

    הֲשִׁיבֵנוּ אָבִינוּ לְתוֹרָתֶךָ

    Let’s return together to Your Torah.

    וְקָרְבֵנוּ מַלְכֵּנוּ לַעֲבוֹדָתֶךָ

    Let’s get close to each other in Your service

    וְהַחֲזִירֵנוּ בִּתְשׁוּבָה שְׁלֵמָה לְפָנֶיךָ

    Let’s return to each other with complete Teshuvah, complete returning.

    בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה יְיָ, הָרוֹצֶה בִּתְשׁוּבָה

    All blessings to You, Nameless One, who delights, as we delight, in Teshuvah!

    Reply
  23. Wendy

    Teaching by Rabbi Fred Guttman

    Elul Day 19.

    Mitzvot and the “Pay it Forward Phenomenon.”

    A local Starbucks recently experienced a “pay it forward phenomenon.” At 7 am, a woman paid for her own coffee at the Starbucks drive-thru, and asked to pay for the person behind her as well. That driver continued the trend. After a few people in a row did it, the baristas started keeping a tally. Every time someone pulled up to the window, the barista would say “the person who went before you paid for your drink. Would you like to continue the trend?” This went on for 11 hours. 378 people paid for someone else’s drink after receiving theirs for free. (It seems the chain broke because #379 did not understand what was being asked.)
    In the section of the Mishnah called Pirke Avot or Ethics of our Ancestors, Ben Azzai teaches “Mitzvah goreret mitzvah… the performance of one mitzvah leads to the doing of another.” That, he is teaching, is the true reward for the performance of a religious obligation. Not that we derive some benefit from doing a mitzvah, not that we earn a reward or prize, we learn how to do more. In the year to come, we can begin to pay it forward with the performance of a single mitzvah, a single religious habit, an individual act of compassion and kindness. And that will lead to another, and another… a year filled with mitzvot!

    Reply
  24. Aryae Post author

    Colors

    (From a poem at this time of year I wrote in 2014.)

    I couldn’t see you before.
    Summer, in her busy days of growing and providing,
    hid you under green work clothes.

    Now after harvest time, with your work clothes in storage,
    in the radiance of shorter, cooler days,
    your golden spectrum, which was there all along,
    is on display for all to see.

    I sit with you in silent wonder.
    If we could decode the deep structure of your patterns,
    what would we learn about the tree, the soil, the air, the rain?
    What directions could we discern for restoring our world?

    People have colors too that don’t get seen on the job site.
    In the autumn we have gifts to offer.

    Reply
  25. Susie Diamond

    The Queen is in the field of clouds I see.from the picture. window of our room pn the 20th floor of the Hhatt Regency, on downtown Phoenix,
    I feel so much gratitude for all of you. Todah Rabbah for sharing your experiences with the King/Queen in the field. I feel enriched by your beautifully written wisdom, your stories, your poems,photos,insights,questions… Each of you are a treasure. Stephen Levine signed my book by him, Remember to treasure yourself. It has taken a long time for me to do so. The
    Behind the fluffy white clouds,
    a radiant light, ha melech v’malkah (The King and Queen are in the field.) My severely painful sinuses from the flight,feel ok after lying down, and drinking a lot of water.Barich ha shem. Ahavah, rachamim, chesed v’zhalom to all of you. May love, compassion,kindness, and peace find their way to the hearts of all living beings on our planet. Amen.

    Reply
  26. Rabbi Diane Elliot

    What is the relationship between teshuvah, a return to the Truth of our essential nature, and forgiveness?

    In his teaching, “Moving from Teshuvah to Forgiveness,” given at the UC Berkeley Hillel siyyum this past Sunday, R. Yair Silverman brought the following excerpt from a letter written by Dr. Martin Luther King from his prison cell to his dear friend and movement colleague,Ralph Abernathy, in July, 1962:

    “First, we must develop and maintain the capacity to forgive. He who is devoid of the power to forgive is devoid of the power to love….It is also necessary to realize that the forgiving act must always be initiated by the person who has been wronged, the victim of some great hurt, the recipient of some tortuous injustice, the absorber of some terrible act of oppression. The wrongdoers may request forgiveness. He may come to himself…but only the injured neighbor, the loving father back home,can really pour out the warm waters of forgiveness. Forgiveness does not mean ignoring what has been done or putting a false label on an evil act. It means, rather, that the evil act no longer remains as a barrier to the relationship. Forgiveness is a catalyst creating the atmosphere necessary for a fresh start and a new beginning.”

    How can the energy of Elul, the felt Presence of Oneness, help us to release the feelings, the narratives, the thought grooves that obscure our true natures–to forgive, so that we may begin anew?

    A poem:

    Teach Me to Forgive

    Adon Ha-S’likhot
    Master of Pardonings,
    teach me to forgive—
    to forgive myself,
    to forgive You,
    to forgive those who have hurt me
    in the name of ignorance, mindlessness,
    certainty, rigidity,
    even righteousness and justice,
    even love;
    to forgive the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune,
    to forgive nature, human and otherwise,
    personal and impersonal,
    majestic and petty;
    to forgive death,
    to forgive You,
    to forgive myself—
    to forgive it all,
    so that I may open to life,
    living-and-dying as it is,
    flowing through me
    carrying it all along,
    a great river of living-and-dying,
    a mighty stream of birthing-and-dying,
    a towering wave of living-and-dying.
    Holy Merciful one
    Ba’al Ha-Rakhamim,
    teach me to forgive.

    —R. Diane Elliot, Aseret Y’mei Hat’shuvah, 5776

    Reply
  27. Aryae Post author

    Another Sunrise

    They’re not all spectacular.
    But they do return with great faithfulness,
    as surely as day follows night,
    each with it’s own nuances,
    many of which lie beyond our discernment.

    So too with hope and faith and love.
    So too with the surge and flow of life itself.


    You sustain life with love.
    You revive the dead with great compassion.
    You sustain the fallen, heal the sick, free the bound,
    keeping your faith even when we’re asleep in the dust…
    Blessed are You, reviver of the dead.

    from the Amidah, 2nd Blessing

    Reply
  28. Susie Diamond

    R.Diane, I will say your prayer every day until Neilah.
    Ha Malka,ha Shekina was in the field with us,as we felt blessed with Shabbos joy,shabbos holiness and shabbos peace in shabbos space and time with our beloved R. Sarah Leah Grafstein,and her chvrah at Sprit of the Desert, Phoenix.

    Reply
  29. Wendy

    The King is in the Hands in the Field

    This week I took my Reiki teacher’s invitation to join a group of women who do Reiki for the seniors at the Senior Center. Thelma, my teacher,who is in her 80s, persisted in her invitation. When I arrived, there were 2 tables set up. I joined the other Reiki practitioners. There were 2-3 per senior.

    I felt like I was in a healing sisterhood giving comfort to seniors
    with their aches and pains, while providing gentle touch and attention. Their gratefulness fed me as well. The encounter was healing to me, a burned out retired health care professional, as I remembered the essence of why I chose my career.I felt a return to my essence and roots.

    Reply
  30. Susie Diamond

    Waiting for the lite rail
    on a platform in Phoenix, I saw a teenage girl, sitting on a bench
    spoon feeding ice cream in a Dixie cup to a younger boy. She stopped and tossed the cup in a
    garbage can. “Mo, mo,he whined, I want mo. “Ain’t have no mo. C’mon we’re goin,little brother.”
    She got up,pulled him up and they began walking. “Wait,I shouted” The girl turned around,”What de ya want white girl.? “I handed her $10. “No way! Why ya doin this”
    I want to. “No stranger given
    me nut in.”.She took the bill and walked on,
    holding her little brother’s hand. He was dragging his right leg slowly walking one step at a time, hanging on to his sister’s hand.
    The King was in the field.

    .

    Reply
  31. Lynn Feinerman

    Latest Women Rising Radio program features a story written by Fujiko Yoshikawa, whose family lived near Hiroshima when the bomb came. She and my Mother have been friends for over 50 years.. they are so sweet together…when I am around them, the Queen is definitely in the field

    Reply

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