Pure Soul

Imbolc                                                                     New (Anniversary) Moon


Last Wednesday evening at Beth Evergreen Rich Levine asked what is the sound of a pure soul. Kate gave an answer that resonated with the group and has stayed with me: “When I would walk into the nursery and other sounds were muted, I could hear the susurration of infant’s breathing and moving. That’s pure potential.” Her comment was heartfelt and it moved everyone. It’s beautiful to me to see Kate opening herself up like this.

The framework of mussar, this was an evening, once a month potluck session, provides the opportunity for deep exploration of our inner world, its motivations and its possibilities. It does this through a long tradition of written helps, guides like Mesillat Yesharim, that limn a subtle and very nuanced spiritual psychology gathered from Jewish practice and scripture. Mussar’s purpose is to develop ethical behavior (musar=ethics) through learning middots, or character traits.

I feel lucky that Kate and I have found this together. Mussar gives us a common language for deep matters and a community of other folks who have the same yearnings, the same desire to probe their inner world and grow in their character.



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