by Rabbi Nathan Martin - January 2019
I still can feel the joyful energy as I joined a chain of a hundred other smiling dancers while we snaked our way through the aisles of the Double Tree hotel conference room and belted out Lekha Dodi along with the 500+ Reconstructionist davveners for the Friday night service. This is one image I will hold onto from the Reconstructing Judaism convention - an image that helps me to remember that we are indeed part of a larger movement of joyful, creative, soulful Jews and allies seeking ways to infuse Jewish meaning into our lives.
As we move into September and the Jewish month of Tishrei, we enter into our most liturgically intensive time of the Jewish year. This can be a dizzying few weeks, moving from Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur to Sukkot and Simchat Torah. This is a movement also from the solemnity and humility of the Yamim Noraim (the awe-ﬁlled days) to the celebration of the joyfulness and abundance of Sukkoth and Simchat Torah.
Our ancestors’ metaphors for the Divine at these different moments seem to shift as well. On Rosh Hashanah, God is envisioned as sovereign and judge,