Letters from Leah
Nov 6, 2013
Dear Beit Sefer Families,
This coming week we read in the Torah about Jacob’s journey away from home. On his way, he lays down with a stone under his head. After a dream of angels on the ladder, and receiving God’s presence, he awakens and says, “Surely, the Lord is present in this place, and I did not know it!” He continues, “How awesome is this place!” (Gen. 28: 10-15)
I am struck this year by the various ways in which the patriarchs/matriarchs of the Torah feel God’s presence. Abraham has conversations with God, Rebecca calls out to God and is answered, Jacob meets God in a dream in a particular place. What do these examples teach us about the intersection of the human and the divine? Where or how does that happen? The one thing I feel with certainty is that it is different for each of us. Some of us feel the divine through the awesomeness of science or math, some through music or dance, some through sports, some through connectedness and community, some through tradition, some through learning, some through nature, others through meditation or prayer, (what didn’t I think to include?)
Rabbi Lawrence Kushner explains that the Jewish questions isn’t “Do you believe in God,” but “How do you experience God?” What’s your answer?