Monthly Archives: April 2006

Counting the omer: Day 13

Day 13_Yesod (foundation- righteousness) in Gevurah (strength- discipline- limits)

Day 13
Yesod in Chesed
Rain beats down life and death_Branches reach skyward_Trees hold on to rocky cliffs_Roots dig in deep into underground aquifers_Rocks mark the passage of time and bear witness

i love these posts, emma. i am hooked!_Posted by rheim on 04/27/2006 03:47:36 AM
on the first night of the omer, rheim and i sat reading my previous frida journals (inspired by frida’s own journal; a mixture of words and images.) we had explored the tile work, my garden, the painted floors: all my creative expressions, had broken matzo for the second night of passover, and i said to her, “i must find a way to bring my art out of this house.” the next day i started this omer journal, no planning, it just emerged out of the magic of the night before. the previous journal had only a few pages left, and this one had been waiting several months to be filled. suddenly it was time. rheim makes guerrilla postcards. (that’s my name for them.) simple cards with typewritten sayings that i think are poems. (she says she isn’t a poet. i disagree.) they offer cryptic insights. these omer meditations of mine are inspired by her postcards. we met years ago at a reading i gave. this year marked our third passover together. passover sedar is always magical for me, a precious gathering of friends, activists, family and surprise guests. (we never know who will show up. the prophet elijah always brings interesting companions.) as the evening drew to a close, we wandered through my home, ending in my study, exploring books and images. so much emerges for me in that night, and often in the days of omer that follow. most of the friends that frequent the sedar year after year, aren’t jewish. they hold that space for me to mark time on an ancient calendar, the holiday that precedes the 49 days of omer, of wandering in the wilderness. some of these friends are passover friends. i hadn’t seen rheim since sedar last year. we cannot let so much time pass between visits again. -emma rosenthal_Posted by emma on 04/27/2006 04:20:06 AM


Counting the Omer: Days 8-10

omer days 8-10_Text:
Days 8-10 _The week of gevurah: strength, discipline, boundaries, limits.    Day 8: loving kindness (chesed) in gevurah,  Day 9 gevurah in gevurah. Day 10 tiferet (beauty, harmony balance in gevurah.
It seems strange that the week that is about discipline is the week I start to (apparently) slack off in my omer journal.  But actually, it was really a decision based on a loving, strong, harmonious understanding of strength, limits, boundaries and discipline.  This weekend I was responsible for the human rights committee conference at UTLA.  I was on my feet (a major accomplishment in itself) for the better part of two days.  On Thursday I had preparation for the conference, but also knew that I needed to rest in anticipation of everything the conference would require of me.  I made it, thanks in no small measure due to living in balance, loving kindness and discipline.  What got me through the conference despite my extreme limitations was disciplined rest, yoga, healthy food choices, hot baths, patience, asking for help, letting go of what I could not control as well as what I could not take on, delegating responsibility, zinc (yeah zicam!!!) vitamin C, lots of vitamin C, rest, lots of rest, and the power of community, which was ever present in bringing this conference into fruition.
I will need to be very still the next few days, to regain all my strength, what little that is.  The pain and the immobility began to set in before I rose from my bed this morning.  I was able to hold it off by sleeping a bit later than those who showed up to set up, arriving at 8:30 instead of 7:30, and spending some time with yoga, meditation and relaxation.
So all this applies to the theme of the week, the discipline in life, the recognition of limits, boundaries, strengths, necessary to carry out a task, a life, a plan with balance, beauty and loving kindness, always mindful of radical self-acceptance and radical self care.

Counting the Omer: Day 7

Day 7 of the Omer_Malchut in Chesed

Day 7 of the omer
sovereignty, grounding, kingdom in loving kindness
a time of deep inner reflection, release, transformation_what is lost what is gained
the loss of a close friend,  illumination of what was there, what was missing, the place where two paths diverge.  the truth is she had stopped caring a long time ago.  love is messy work.  it takes a rare integrity, the willingness to look inward, show up, wait, nurture.
in the end we really walk this path alone.

Counting the Omer: Days 5 and 6

Day 5 omer

Omer day 5
text:_hod shebe chesed,
order splendor theory order splendor theory order splendor theory,order splendor theory
hod is the road map theory in process, knowing where we are going, planning the trip, the hard work the mud the weeds, research washing the dishes, taking out the trash, the spiritual of the mundane, the sacred of the ordinary.

Day 6 of the Omer

Text:_yesod in chesed_foundation /righteousness in lovingkindness
love is communion, art embrace, sex, touch, healing, compassion, deep deep deep connection
this is the base the foundation
foundation love-universal human rights a wide circle no one on the outside- a big party- dance dance dance m arms are wide enough to love the whole world.

Counting the Omer: Day 4

Day 4 of the Omer
Netzach in Chesed_Creativity, inspiration, endurance
Creativity often requires waiting      aimless wandering
Waiting_        Waiting
Long periods of enormous self doubt_Where am I going?_Where will this lead?_As I endure this brutal ambiguity, cruel critique, will my work endure?
Do I have anything to say to the great infinite_The legacy of human thought?
Where does this road go?  Am I lost or merely finding my way?
Creativity in loving kindness: innovative ways to bring life, love, transformation, revolution-

Counting the Omer: Day 3 , plus omer and Kabbalah

omer journal cover
Omer is a measure of barley, and the counting of the omer is conducted during the 50 days from the second day of Passover  when barley was offered in the temple until Shavuot, when Moses received the Torah on Mount Sinai.  The first day of Omer, this year, was Friday, (starting at sundown on Thursday evening.)
In the Hebrew mystical tradition of Kabbalah, each week is ascribed one of the qualities of each of the lower seven sephrioth (levels) of the tree of life, with each day focusing on one of the other seven sephiroth within that sephirah.  So the first week, for example is Chesed (loving kindness).  The first day is Chesed in Chesed.  The second sephirah is Gevurah (restriction, limitation, discipline.)  So the second day is Gevurah in Chesed.  The third day is Tiferet (beauty, balance) in Chesed, and so on.
Yesterday, through a combination of computer graphics and pencil and pen renditions, I drew the kabbalistic tree of life, which serves as the cover of my omer journal.
I will continue posting to this blog my omer meditations; a series of drawings and writings from my omer journal.
Day 3:

Omer journal, day 3
Today is day three of the omer_Beauty and balance (tiferet) in loving kindness (chesed) balance in all things—the grace that beauty really is- the time for seedlings to grow.  The space between notes of music.  Time in communion and time alone.
Todayis beauty in loving kindness balance in an unbalanced world, hope against armies and industry.  The promise that love and will can alone dismantle the death machine.
Pencils have amazing powers.  What is done can be undone or redone. So uch in life is irreversible, one a mark is made it is set; in stone, in ink.  Pencil is forgiving.
I scribble a colonized Hebrew of one who wasn’t raised in Hebrew school or yeshiva.  Simple scratches like kindergarten crayon attempts at literacy.
An organic garden requires balance to achieve beauty.  Too many snails, no snails at al; neither is good.  Ther must be enough food for bugs and me.
Locusts are the only insects that are kosher.
Why would locusts be kosher?
Because when there are locusts there is nothing left to eat.  Dried and preserved they will last until the next harvest; manna –enough for everyone

Recipe: Motza Brei

Motza is an unleavened bread that Jews eat during the Passover week.  It is a very dry bread that symbolizes the bread of affliction, the bread carried in haste as the early Hebrews escaped the brutality of slavery.  It represents the sacrifices that must be made for self-determination, self-governance, independence and justice.
I use whole wheat motza and serve it with yogurt and a fruit spread that is sweetened with fruit juice.  __________________________________________
Matzo Brei
Soak 3 motza in hot water until soggy._Drain_Scramble 5 eggs_Add one quarter cup soy milk or dairy milk_Add one tablespoon non alcoholic vanilla extract_Soak soggy motza in egg mixture_Fry, stirring occasionally.
Serve with sour cream (I use yogurt) and fruit spread.
Optional: add crushed bananas and raisins.
Andy likes to put hot sauce on my matzo brei, but I forgive him