Sephirat Ha’omer

COUNTING THE OMER – This prayer is traditionally recited between sundown and sunrise of each day.

Day 3: Tiferet she b’Chesed

The Blessing (Day 3):
Baruch atah Adonai elohaynu melech ha’olam asher kidshanu b’mitzvotav v’tzivanu al sephirat ha’omer.
Blessed are you, G-D, Source of Lovingkindness, You make us holy through your mitzvot, commanding us to count the Omer.

Hayom shlisha yomim l’Omer.
Today is the third day of the Omer.

Week One – Chesed (Lovingkindness, Compassion, Grace)

Day Three- Tiferet she b’Chesed (Harmony within Lovingkindness) – HEART to RIGHT SHOULDER

As we seek Tiferet she b’Chesed, Harmony within Lovingkindness, we search our deep, centered inner compassion to find the decent, caring and honorable person we are within. There is a Jewish law called pikuach nefesh which teaches that “saving a life” is above all other Jewish laws and that even our sacred laws of Shabbat, and others, may be broken to accomplish this. This idea can be extended to honoring our own life worth by having compassion on ourselves and forgiving ourselves for anything that is causing us to feel unbalanced or unworthy. Harmony and Balance (Tiferet) within us is affected by our need to approach it with Lovingkindness (Chesed.)

In addition to the effect of Tiferet she b’Chesed on ourselves, we can also consider it in relation to others. Special long-term friendships usually last and become strong because of compassion (Chesed) being balanced. Friends see the flaws in each other, yet compassionately they help the other to transform and progress. This compassion can be accepted and returned, not out of our neediness, guilt or fear, but with a sense of harmonious exchange.

Life as an adult is a balancing act. We feel stressed and pulled in multiple directions at all times. This Passover season, I was blessed to have someone share with me an article that reminded me that it’s okay if my Passover Seder wasn’t a grand event, staged and produced in an amazing way through the technology available. That it is okay to not have all the usual items I would have prepared for the meal on our table. That I need to exercise loving compassion on myself and that it is okay not to have everything possible done. That it’s more important to be balanced than to be “perfect.” With all the articles and online posts telling us of the “productive” ways we can be handling the COVID-19 pandemic restrictions that are keeping us at home, the pressure to still accomplish something can be overwhelming. Tiferet she b’Chesed reminds us that self-compassion is a necessary ingredient to keeping everything in balance.

As a meditative practice, take a few deep breaths and say a silent prayer of gratitude to G-d for the compassion to know that you have a space of balance within you, if you can forgive yourself for anything you feel you didn’t do as well as you’d like, for any errors you have made. Allow lovingkindness to help bring you to a space of balance and harmony. By doing this, you are fulfilling a great act, and potentially fulfilling the law of pikuach nefesh, saving a life, saving yourself.

Published by jesschasen

Temple Emanuel Sisterhood - Past President 2019-2020 Temple Emanuel - Interim Executive Director

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