Sunday, October 24, 2010


I have been drawn to the spiritual from the time I can remember anything.  I wanted to know the Truth with a capital "T", never content with the answers or lack thereof that permeated religious conversation.  I found inconsistencies and illogical conclusions and ideas about faith that fell apart with even the slightest bit of examination.

And then I found a place to rest my weary soul, a philosophy and practice that gave me a context and framework for every one of my questions, that talked openly and clearly about G*d and sin and virtue and the nature of time and space, all of it anchored as firmly in the ancient past as the distant future.  It came to me from India, and a culture and tradition shaped by all the greatness of Eastern thought.

It was a study and practice that gave me such solace, if for the simple fact that I could end the endless struggle against human ideas about G*d and their terrible insufficiencies.  And I could consider G*d as real and personal and belonging completely to me, and me to G*d, and it was a huge relief to not fight against the deep comfort this offered.

And it is still with me - this knowledge, this practice and especially this comfort.  But this summer, I traveled to Israel, and had an experience I never did have when I visited India.  Which was simply this.  Standing at the Wall in the Old City of Jerusalem, surrounded by people and politics I'm deeply unsure about, I knew I was standing on Holy ground, that the holiness had been there for thousands of years, and all of was now in our hands.

Not just my hands, but our hands, the hands of all of us who feel this same connection even when we don't know exactly what it is we are connected to.  I do not know what has pulled me toward Judaism and this community and that land, after being so certain of where I belonged before, but I know enough to pay attention and see what comes next.

There is something in all this about compassion - something about taking the best of what we know about G*d and humanity, and sharing it clearly and openly with all the souls who are so in need of comfort and belonging, just exactly as I was and still am.  I'm trying to see my way through to how I can connect my Israel experience to my ordinary day-to-day life here in the Kansas, and what will bridge the gap between the Middle East and the Midwest.