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Tradition & Innovation

Torah of the Broken Heart

two people wearing tzitzit (fringes), one is wearing a denim skirt and the other is wearing black pants, the fringes falling from their waists
As God breathes life into a child, 
the Holy One kisses the edges of the newborn soul.  
Each kiss creates a fringe in the pure white cloth of the spirit. 
Before the soul falls to earth, God whispers softly, 
“Remember, you can always find Me in the fringes.”  
We are not hemmed up, sturdy and secure.  
We are sent to earth with fringes.  
Our fringed garment can be easily ripped and torn.  
Life can cut us with heartache and pain … and when it does, 
    we desperately seek to mend the tear.  
We try to sew the tear with threads of busyness or escape.  
We may search for a soulmate or a teacher.  
We may patch the hole with money and all it brings 
    or ignore our shreds and pretend they don’t exist.  
We may numb ourselves to our own pain 
and lose ourselves in the pain of others. 
But finally, when the tear begins to tear us apart, 
we remember the whispered words our souls heard long ago, 
“You can find Me in the fringes.”  
And then we know—God is in the tear.  
When our hearts are broken and we are shattered, 
when we are at our worst, 
it is then that we can find God.  
It is then that prayer becomes alive and true.  
Allow the tear to exist.  
Honor it—For God is in the tear.  
When Divinity once again kisses the fringes of the soul, 
God’s light breaks through to heal the wound, 
    the tear becomes a shimmering drop, 
    and the teardrop becomes a shining light of 
gratitude and wisdom. 

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