Tuesday, October 03, 2006

Judgement Day

I know I know; the title couldn't be more cliche. please bear with me, I'm only an arrogant college student with pretentions to greatness.

the sun sets, Yom Kippur settles slowly over the land, and immediately panic sets in. there's only twenty five hours left before it's all over. twenty five hours to change the fate of humankind by sheer force of will. will we do it this year? could this be the year our voices crying in unison are enough to shatter the iron curtains of Heaven, like the trumpets bringing down the walls of Jericho? or are they doomed to shatter against the cold rusty metal and dissolve unheard into the atmosphere?
I have to admit, I wasn't feeling it going in, and that's never a good sign. I know it's my fault; I didn't prepare myself properly, I didn't ready myself enough. I am willing to take full responsibility for that - my lack of connection wasn't anyone's fault but my own, not this time. but I wasn't sure, really wasn't sure what to go in armed with this round ...I am slowly being stripped of all my armor. realizing oneself in the larger picture is so much more more hopelessizing a thing than I'd expected.
last year I went in armed with Gush Katif. I could tell G-d, look - your people joined together with love instead of hatred at the moment of its highest tension. isn't that teshuva for the sinat chinam which destroyed the beit hamikdash? doesn't that make us worthy of geulah?
but this year we had Amonah, the antithesis of Gush Katif, so all my arguments were thus destroyed.
I wanted to say, give us back our brothers in captivity. but if it will lead to the captivity, perhaps the death of countless others, is that a fair trade to bargain for?
I wanted to ask, let my people no more suffer. but if no one suffers this year, does that only push off, and perhaps worsen, eventual inevitable suffering? if there is so much suffering that needs to happen to this people and I stop some of it, does it make things worse on the other end of the equation?
what am I supposed to pray for? for the sick to be healed - that they may now even greater pain? for the nation to be spared - and thus lack a level of cleansing they might have otherwise had? how am I to know which threads need to be continued and which others snapped off? I know that G-d knows best and isn't going to stop something from happening which needs to happen just bc I asked Him to. but it does leave me a bit at a loss, and so so helpless. if we cannot pray, then we have no weapon, and if we don't now what to pray for, what can we say that has any weight?

maybe I'm not trying hard enough. maybe I've gotten lazy, or given up out of exhaustion. none of this is particularly useful rumination. but I'm tired of being tired. I'm frustrated with being frustrated. have I finally gotten jaded and apathetic? burned out, worn down, ragged and unsteady? I can't even see the point of crying anymore. in the end it all just leaves me cold.

and yet I'm not allowed to walk away. I can never, will never, walk away. like the angel who's doomed to stick around while armaggeddon falls, desperately attempting to save the last stray few as they stumble off towards they're inevitable doom....

I was afraid for the Judgement Day this year, but I was ten times more afraid for its end, and I'm scareder still now. the very thought of what this year may hold for us makes me tremble. someday it will all be over, but is that day yet too far in the future, or too near?
and Moshiach's still not here, which means I failed again. there is always next year, or even mayhap sooner. but how much can still happen before then? how much more can He do to us before He has to save us at last?


Blogger hummerhummer said...

hey mir-
i think you are very right and either very tired or very connected to g-d, which ever.
also, i got a new blog, as u can see.
u should check it out.

11:00 PM  
Blogger Tobie said...

I've given up on trying to pray for anything specific anymore. Lost the necessary certitude during the Gush Katif craziness and have yet to regain a sense of what I want from the world. So I usually toss it into G-d's lap- my prayers tend towards "Hashem, I love You very much. The world is a bit of a mess right now, innit? Could You please do something about that? Or not. If that's Your plan. But...let things work out right. Please."

Not very specific, but what can you do? And personal prayers aren't all that much better. But I guess if G-d is omniscient and all that, we can rely on Him to figure out what we should be asking for, and perhaps just chalk up our tefillot to that.

1:16 AM  
Blogger Miri said...

yeah, but here's the thing; it's really hard to fight for anyone's honor if you don'the trouble is, how do we know when we're supposd to be fight have anything to fight with. and I kinda think that's what G-d wants from us, at least sometimes. I get the feeling that sometimes G-d wants us to call HIm out on stuff. after all, there are all those bits of Torah here He was gonna destroy us and we were saved through the tefillot of the big guys. but how are we supposed to know when and what? it's hard to focus without something specific to get worked up over....anyway. guess that conflict is just part of the ongoing struggle.

3:46 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

my understanding is that Yom Kipur perhaps least of all is about connecting. This is a day where we are supposed to deprive ourselves physically, in some attempt perhaps to be like angels or in some other way attain extra holiness or spirituality.

(Sidenote: there is a suspicion that many religious ecstatics, especially in Christianity, just didn't eat enough, so they had a sort of low-grade hunger high.)

What if, instead, we deprive ourselves of Gd? We ask for forgiveness, to be inscribed and sealed in the Book(s) for just one more year (which is rather disingenuous, since we want more than one year, but it does teach us to pace ourselves and not live too far in the future).

But the Temple Service was an almost entirely pagan-seeming ritual -- putting sins of Am Yisroel onto a goat, which someone chases over a cliff; meanwhile (or perhaps later in time), the high priest walks into a room with two golden cherubs locked in a physical embrace. Not much could be further from what we normally expect from Judaism, yet this is part of Judaism because Gd commanded it so.

But what if, instead, this is a day of horrors, to show us what we'd be like if we slipped? A taste of the forbidden to make the every-day commandments seem that much more palatable, and so on that day we deprive ourselves of our connection to Gd and realign with our inner, baser selves in order to expose it to the light in a controlled environment.

Then again, I just made that up so that I'd have something to say on the topic.

10:44 PM  

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