Day 33 of the Omer — Lag b’Omer!

Hod b’Hod
Splendid Humility within Splendid Humility

Tonight (Wednesday night) at sundown, we begin the day of hod squared: humble splendor refracted through its own self. This is the day when the divine quality of hod is most concentrated and potent.

Hod can relate to hoda’ah: for what are you grateful today?

Take a moment to say “todah,” thank you: to the people around you — to a loved one — to a stranger — to the grocery store clerk — to God.

How does it feel to engage in a practice of conscious gratitude? How does gratitude shape your sense of humility? How does it shape your sense of splendor?

Today is known as Lag B’Omer. (“Lag” is how one pronounces the Hebrew number 33, spelled lamed-gimel.) On this day, tradition tells us, the plague which had been sent against the students of Rabbi Akiva (because they were not kind and respectful toward one another) ceased.

Today is a minor holiday, often celebrated with archery, with merriment, and with bonfires. Even if you don’t light a literal fire, can you fan the flames of your heart today to leap in joy?

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-three days, which are four weeks and five days, of the Omer!


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