Monday, 22 December 2014

Brief Look Back

Don't Look Back in Anger
Rather than talk about all the things that have changed in my life this past year, here are some of the selections that looking back I think are significant to me:

  • Hebrew Immersion: (continued) Went through Chumash (5 Books of Moses) with Rashi commentary again for 3rd time and completed 2 set of Mishnayot (Oral Law) Nashim. Now proficient enough to be able to read Rabbi Moshe Cordovero's commentary for first 5 chapters of Sefer Yetzira. Started on Introduction to Rabbi Eliezer of Germiza's Sodei Raziya
  • Fiction: Made a come-back in my life, in particular Merkabah Rider by Edward M Erdelac stood out as a good read. 
  • Disappearing Middle Ground: World and local politics apepars to heading away from a common ground in which common understanding can be found. I expect that this will unfortunately be a continuing trend in to 2015 as the mentality of us versus them continues to gain traction. 
  • Play-offs: tucked away in this update is a non-project that has had some measure of success "An awesome lion, who dares rouse him?". The Detroit Lions have made it to the play-offs. 
  • Looking for Common Ground: I've started looking in to where the over-laps occur between Rabbinic Kabbalah and Western Mystery Traditions. I expect this to be a project spanning multiple years and delving centuries in to the past. 
  • Acharon, Acharon, Chaviv ("Save the best for last"): I have finally started letter combinations as outlined in Chapter 2 of Sefer Yetzira... at last!

Be a Narrow Bridge
One other thing I'd like to mention as it happened pretty recently. Whilst at a friend's wedding, during one of the speeches I knew there was the potential for a massive emotional melt-down as the person speaking was going to mention the parent whom they had lost many years ago.

I know what this is like, but unlike my case - this parent seemed to still have an ongoing and unfortunately unhealthy attachment to at least one of their children. So on a whim I acted as a bridge to allow them to be present and bask in the joy of the occasion without souring the event.

It went well and the very touching moment in the speech passed without incident, leading to lots more celebrations and joyous dancing. Unfortunately I wasn't as careful as I should have been and a lady collapsed with suspected stroke. After she was taken out, I rushed to recite Psalms and later found out that she had just fainted due to low blood pressure.

So you could look at it as all in my imagination and perhaps it was. But on the off chance that it wasn't, I'll know for next time to form a narrower bridge when deceased relatives want to be present and prevent any hitch-hikers from catching a ride to pull someone to the other side before their time.