Each year as summer fades into fall, Jewish tradition invites us to turn inward. The month of Elul precedes the High Holy Days of Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur. We dedicate this time to preparing ourselves for the holidays so that we can experience them as fully as possible. During Elul we are asked to look into ourselves. We think about who we are and who we want to be. Whose forgiveness do we need in order for us to enter a new year with a clean slate? Judaism offers help for this period of introspection in several ways: The shofar sounds daily, awakening us from complacency; later in the month, prayers of repentance—selikhot—are added to the daily liturgy. Perhaps most important, during Elul, we can support each other through the process of requesting and offering forgiveness with full and open hearts.
Month of Elul
Perhaps it’s time to reimagine the King metaphor—much more like that of the Sabbath Queen—simple and clear. Golden.
"Elul calls us to be deep sea divers into our souls." Jewels of Elul is a project created by Craig Taubman that offers 29 inspirational insights for the month of Elul. The following blog post by Rabbi David Wolpe, first published at the Jewels of Elul website, introduces the Jewels of 2015 on their 10-year anniversary. Mazel Tov!
Grief begins to feel like the humidity of northeast summer: a ubiquitous discomfort that we’ve come to accept as normal.
Tags: racial justice
Whenever I teach about ritual or work with people to prepare for a life cycle transition, I always stress that what makes a ritual powerful and effective is the preparation and intention with which...