Imbolc New Life Moon
Silhouette of hiking man jumping over the mountains
In psyche news. The heaviness seems to be gone, that drug down, want to keep going down feeling. When I’m in it, my soul seems more attracted to weight, willingly binding itself to a fall. The heaviness is a major physical clue to melancholy for me, a way I know to check for other signs. Its absence does not mean the melancholy has lifted, but does usually precede it. May it be so.
A very Jewish weekend. On Saturday we attended bagel table, an informal sabbath worship with conversation and, you guessed it, bagels. The presenter this week though wasn’t Rabbi Jamie, but Rabbi Evet of B’nai Havurah, a reconstructionist synagogue in Denver proper.
A congregant of Beth Evergreen, loved and respected, a mensch, had died suddenly, just that morning. The conversation about his death after operation for a malignant brain tumor was hushed, shocked. When Rabbi Evet started the service, the conversation quieted, but the looks, the feeling of it was still palpable. She stopped the service and had us focus on his death. It was a powerful moment, one in which what was being suppressed got lifted up. People told stories about Jeff, about what he meant to Beth Evergreen.
Rabbi Evet teased out characteristics from those stories after a bit and suggested that a way to honor his memory was to figure out how to put back into our little community the attributes lost by his death. His smile. His willingness to help. His commitment to education.
Steve turned to Marilyn and said, “Marilyn, I really appreciate everything you do here. We don’t say those things out loud while people are alive. Maybe we could.” And, later, after the service was over, Marilyn came up to Kate and me and said, “I want to tell you both how much you mean to me.”
“And you to us,” I said. “Through having met you and found Beth Evergreen, we feel like we’ve finally moved to Colorado. This is our community now.”
“Makes a difference, doesn’t it?” Marilyn replied.
“It makes all the difference.”
I meant that and this experience with Rabbi Evet illustrates it. Beth Evergreen is a place where the heart and the mind both get their due. In fact, lev, the Hebrew word for heart, is also the word for mind. There is no other word for mind. Mind and heart are lev.
On Sunday we drove over to North Turkey Creek, up Peaceful Hills to Meadow View Road. The occasion was a new member/prospective member gathering at the home of Dan and Kristin. 40 or so folks, some board members, Rabbi Jamie and Tara, folks I knew and many I didn’t gathered around, yep you guessed it, bagels and lox and fruit and veggies.
The energy was good. There were little kids and older adults, all milling around, getting to know each other. I enjoyed the time. As is now usual for me though, I felt a sense of relief when we left and I got outside, to the quiet. Like the candidate event at the Friedman’s a couple of weeks ago I can hear in these settings, but it’s hard and stressful. I don’t always notice the stress until it’s absent.