Friday, August 24, 2007

A Day of Rest

My father, whom I adore, always says the wisest thing when we finally reach the day of rest:

"Shabbat always comes at the right time."

And, it is so true. Just when I don't think that I can take another minute of the hussle and bussle of the work-week, Shabbat is here. Granted, as a rabbi, I work on the Sabbath, helping others find the rest and rejuvenation that they so long for. Nonetheless, there is something profound that you feel on this holy day. The excitement, the anticipation, and the longing for something ineffable.

In fact, the Jewish mystics would talk about a "neshamah y'teirah," an "Extra Soul," that we would receive on Shabbat. Can you imagine it? We have an additional, special soul that joins us on the Sabbath. What does this mean exactly? I like to think that it means extra joy, extra opportunities for holiness, and a special connection with the divine spark that lies within each and every one of us.

So, on Shabbat, I like to take a deep breath, and try to connect with my soul and the neshamah y'teirah within me. I breathe in relaxation, and breathe out the stress of the past week. And at that moment, I can truly wish someone "Shabbat Shalom" - a peaceful Sabbath.

Shabbat Shalom, everyone!

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