After sundown on Sunday, April 28 we recite:
(Traditional) Baruch ata Adonai Eloheynu melech ha-olam asher kid’shanu b-mitz’votav v-tzivanu ahl s’firat ha-omer.
(Feminized) Aht brucha Shechina eloheynu chey ha-olamim asher kidash’tanu b-mitz’voteyha v-tziv’tanu ahl s’firat ha-omer.
We bless the Source of time and space that summons us to holy action and instructs us on the counting of the omer.
Today is 34 days of the Omer, which is 4 weeks and 6 days, the day of Yesod sheh b- Hod.
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We’re approaching the close of the hod cycle. I feel anticipation and also some loss – I’m going to miss being with hod so intimately. And paying closer attention to the small, daily challenges of giving over control and letting go of my efforts to shape things that are beyond me is sometimes really difficult and scary, and sometimes liberating and embracing.
Hod is recognized as the “seat of prophecy” in the system of the sefirot. As we bring yesod, foundation, into hod today, we are invited to explore prophecy. Yesod brings us within reach of the world of human existence–above, and aligned with malchut/manifestation, we can see the realization of hod in the world just ahead of us, but we’re not there yet.
Abraham Joshua Heschel teaches that human actions have an impact on G-d—that G-d yearns for our closeness, our love, and our partnership in tending to the world and its life forms. Prophets, Heschel taught, were people who could sympathize deeply with both G-d and with other people. They could bring G-d’s reality to people, and people’s reality to G-d. “To the prophet,” Heschel writes, “knowledge of G-d was fellowship with G-d, not attained by syllogism, analysis or induction, but by living together.” (The Prophets, Harper Colophon, 1975, v.2, p. 3.)
Our dwelling in hod has been our time to touch “living together.” By releasing our grip for a moment, maybe we’ve been able to sink into the will and consciousness of another being. What has it brought us? Where has it taken us? What would we like to bring with us into the realm of manifestation?
We each have our own “seat of prophecy” that we can call on and access. Like the prophets of the Hebrew Bible, sometimes the message is hard to hear, and even harder to live into. And sometimes the message comes on the wings of angels, lifting us to new heights of love and understanding.
Ribbono Shel Olam, Master of the Universe, today I invite yesod, foundation, into my experience of hod, letting go. As I ready myself to bring this quality of hod into the world, help me to open my heart even wider to You. Help me to remember that I don’t need to understand You in order to be with You. Help me to discern your loving whispers in the rustling of branches and the buzzing of bees. May my practice today be of service to You and to Your creation.