Boundaried Strength within Splendor / Humility
Tonight (Sunday night) at sundown, we begin the day of strength and good boundaries within the week of splendor-and-humility. It’s kind of a koan, this divine quality: at once amazing and splendid, and unassuming and humble. And both of these aspects are channeled through the good boundaries of gevurah.
How do you react to the notion of strength through humility? Pay attention to how your body responds to this idea — and your heart — your mind — your spirit. Does it seem possible that strength, splendor, and humility could coexist? The kabbalists who organized this paradigm for counting the Omer clearly believed that God can be all of these things at once — and so can we.
Close your eyes, summon up your inner strength and your inner splendor (tempered with your inner humility), and take a few deep breaths exulting in this combination of qualities before making the blessing over the Omer.
This is the 30th step toward Shavuot, toward Sinai, toward revelation.
As I count the Omer, let my counting create a tikkun, a healing, between transcendence and immanence, God far above and God deep within.
בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה יְיָ, אֱלֹהֵינוּ רוּחַ הַעולָם, אָשֶר קִדשָנוּ בְּמִצְוֹתָיו וְצִוָנוּ אַל סְפִירַת הַעמֶר.
Baruch atah, Adonai, eloheinu ruach ha’olam, asher kidshanu b’mitzvotav v’tzivanu al sfirat ha-omer.
Blessed are You, Adonai our God, breath of life, who makes us holy with mitzvot and gives us this opportunity to count the Omer.
Today is thirty days, which are four weeks and two days, of the Omer!