{thursday thought}

“Judaism is a religion that’s pretty big on blessings. We don’t just say a benediction before and after eating, but also when going to the ocean, meeting an old friend, seeing a rainbow, hearing either good or bad news, meeting a non-Jewish king and smelling a fragrant tree. One that tends to make folks giggle the first time they hear of it is a blessing that you’re supposed to say after using the bathroom. Yes! There’s a potty blessing! We do have a blessing for everything! We, as a people, are nothing if not thorough.

The post-bathroom liturgy is traditionally formulated as,

Blessed are You, God our deity, sovereign of the universe, who formed humans with wisdom and created within them many openings and many hollows. It is obvious in the presence of your glorious throne that if one of them were ruptured, or if one of them were blocked, it would be impossible to exist and stand in Your presence. Blessed are you, God, who heals all flesh and performs wonders.

Even if the God language in this text doesn’t resonate with you, there’s something really important here. This blessing encourages us to experience awe in the face of the human body’s complexity, and an awareness of the myriad of things that have to go right in order for us to continue drawing our next breath — and the breath after that. The fact that we’re able to eliminate waste as we’re meant to is a wonder in its own right, a miracle worthy of our respect and gratitude. The simple fact of being embodied is worthy of our spiritual engagement.” ~ Rav Danya Ruttenberg, author of, ‘Nurture the Wow: Finding Spirituality in the Frustration, Boredom, Tears, Poop, Desperation, Wonder, and Radical Amazement of Parenting’ and other books

Yes, I just wished you good eliminating on this, our national holiday of overeating.

Vacaville 200

This Thursday’s thought? For what we have received, may we truly be grateful. Maybe pay it forward.

4 Replies to “{thursday thought}”

  1. Today’s Daily Issa might be a companion to your blessing, if by wind, we mean “wind” (that is, the breaking kind…) 🙂

    thanks to the wind
    they are precious…
    billowing clouds

    .風有をもつて尊し雲の峰
    kaze aru wo motte tôtoshi kumo no mine

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