This was an almost unknown thing where I grew up, in a Conservative Jewish Synagogue community. The “spiritual” Jews were the Hasidic Jews, very far from our Conservative ways. Spiritual yes, weird yes, orthodox yes, confined yes. Yet there was a pull, a gravity that the Hasidic community had which we inherently knew had something to do with knowing G~d.
The Hasidim were a model for us. They were intense. And they were actively waiting for Messiah, a savior from G~d. They were looking for Messiah in the midst of Jewish Spirituality.
We Conservative Jews were not actively looking for Messiah. Many were not actively interested in knowing G~d. Yet we were fully committed to being Jews, supporting Israel, praying the liturgy, immersed in Jewish culture.
So how do we connect with G~d? Is there a connecting point between the infinity of G~d and the frailty of Man?
A Messiah – a go between – a connector. Is there a messiah in every generation?
In the Bible, the “go between” role is the Priest. The biblical priests are only a distant memory, still remembered in our Jewish community as the Cohen. Other religions have various “priest” roles. Is there a spiritual great high priest?
Now I am interested in Jewish Spirituality. Not particularly in Hasidism, though there is much to learn from my very intense brothers. I am interested in Jewish Meditation, quiet times to think, or NOT think. In songs and niggunes. In dreams and dreamers. In broadening perspective. G~d of all mankind. He both Loves and Judges us all.
Are we lost from G~d, or is G~d lost from us? And how do we redeem the relationship?
Oh, the picture… Galveston, Texas mid-day summer on the beach. The sun reflecting on the wet sand. Hmmmm?