May 19, 2011

Rooted in Heaven consciousness

"Happy is the man who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked, nor stand in the way of sinners, nor sit in the seat of the scornful. Rather he delights in the teaching of the L-rd, and meditates on it day and night. He's like...

...a tree, planted by streams of water...

...which brings forth it's fruit in season, whose leaf does not wither; and whatever he does, he will prosper."
Tehillim 1:1-3

For a razor-sharp mystical exploration of parashat Bechukotai, I recommend this article by R. Shefa Gold:

May 5, 2011

Give back

This song is brilliant. Yeah, it's not every day I am driven to blog by Orthodox Jewish Rappers. Well, today is a new day.

What I wrote in my last post was mostly me letting off steam. Sometimes religion starts feeling really itchy and confining, and there is a part of me that just stretches out a bit and sends big cracks shooting through the body of my religion(s). None of them seem to fit quite right all of the time. And yes, sometimes it's all very confusing and thanks for your patience, world.

Anyway, I'm operating from the belief that there is Something Else that underlies all the beautiful and varied religious practices and prayers and prejudices. And I've been trying to find that Something for a long time; trying to get to the bottom of things. I know sometimes I miss the forest for the trees. In some wonderful moments I am the forest.

"Meister Eckhardt said that our religions are like houses. Each house has a trap door somewhere down in the basement, and if we go deep enough, we will fall through the trap door into a river that flows beneath all of us." - Samir Selmanovic, It's Really All About God

There's a line in this song that (to me) pretty much sums up what I've found to be true about that River flowing underneath...

"Stakes is high, all ya do is try to take
fill up yourself, number one mistake
give back to the world, that's the only way
redemption comin' like a runaway train."

It's weird how Matisyahu can distill pure, unadulturated Wisdom into reggae-rap music. Yep, weird. But I like it.

And this is exactly what I've found. I think this is what the kingdom of G-d / Malchut is. The Shekhinah presence of G-d that chose to be exiled with us, and is every moment shining through the seams and about to break through and bear fruit. Her ways are ways of pleasantness and all of her paths are peace. Her way is to love your neighbor. To judge not lest you be judged. To reach across cultural and religious boundaries and show compassion without expectation to the people you thought G-d didn't even like (cause that's what Samaritans were to 1st century Jews).

So yeah, that's my soap box for the day. Don't operate out of the ego, turn the tide; give, don't take. And things just might change for the better...