Parshas Noach 5769
November 1, 2008
A SPECIAL SECTION FOR THOSE WHO
PREPARE FOR SHABBOS
AN OLD HEBREW EXPRESSION STATES:THOSE
WHO PREPARE FOR SHABBOS EAT ON SHABBOS
The Fall Yom Tovim have come to an end and we at Daven With Dov were excited to have our first opportunity to dance with our Torah on Simchas Torah. The weather here in Florida was wonderful and very unlike the Simchas Torah on which we experienced hurricane Wilma. At that time we were without electricity, sand was piled everywhere and there was a curfew because there were no traffic lights. We feel blessed to have experienced the joy of all the Yom Tovim with family and friends.
Voices from the Ezras Nashim—The Schechinah
A short while ago a friend confronted me with the statement, “I don’t feel the Schechinah there is too much conflict in our community.” Even as we were speaking I knew that I felt the presence of the Schechinah. The episode made me think and then do some research on the Schechinah. I was shocked about how little was actually written about the Schechinah in English. Basically the information indicated what I already knew. The concept of the Schechinah is Kabbalistic (mystical writings) and refers to an aspect of HaShem that is considered feminine. The Schechinah resides where the presence of HaShem is felt and represents a peaceful side of HaShem that separates itself from the aspect of Din (justice-strictly interpreting the law).
I thought about my friend’s comment and realized that HaShem tests us with conflict in each and everyone of our relationships. It is our response to conflict that can lead us to growth and the strengthening of faith or into the pitfalls of the yetzer hora (evil inclination). The choice is ours.
Even in the presence of conflict it is possible to experience the presence of the Schechinah if we recognize that we really only feel the Schechinah’s presence when we allow the Schechinah to dwell within our own soul. The presence of the Schechinah in a community is really dependent upon how many people in the community are willing to let the Schechinah dwell within them. When each of us feels the presence of the Schechinah within us we radiate the peace and comfort the Schechinah brings. If there are many people in the community who experience the presence of the Schechinah then the community as a whole feels and benefits from that presence. But even in those instances when there are many people who are unwilling to do teshuvah or to request mechilah or to make the tikun required of them the Schechinah can be present in those who have.
Each of us has the ability to create within ourselves a fitting home for the Schechinah. It may take prayer or teshuvah or just fighting off the yetzer hora, but once we make ourselves a fitting home for the Schechinah we are able to be a point of stability that helps others in our families and communities to also experience the peace, healing and non-judgmental qualities of the Schechinah.
As we say at the end of each book of the Torah
Chazak Chazak - May We Strengthen Each Other
Elk’s Menu for Parshas Noach
October 31, 2008—3 Cheshvan 5769
Whole Wheat Challah
Baked in the merit of a child for a childless couple
Call Yehudis Halberstam at 718-972-4793 for this week’s names
Seasonal Fruit Cup
Mixed Vegetable Soup
Salmon en Croute with Sautéed Spinach
Twice Baked Potatoes
Lettuce Salad with Find Herbs and Homemade Dressing
November 1, 2008—3 Cheshvan 5769