A Rosh Hashanah story from a master of our tradition:
While passing through a marketplace, Rabbi Kehot of Veritch, a disciple of Rabbi Israel Baal Shem Tov, overheard a conversation between two horse dealers. “I was thinking,” said one to the other. “What does the psalmist mean when he says, ‘Do not be as a horse, or a mule, without understanding, their mouths stopped with bit and bridle’?[Psalms 32:9.] Well, when you put a bit in a horse’s mouth, he thinks that you are giving him something to practice his chewing on. Don’t be like a horse, King David is saying. When your Heavenly Master sends something your way, understand that it is more than something to chew on…” Rabbi Kehot related this exchange to his teacher. The Baal Shem Tov was greatly excited by the horsedealer’s insight, and was inspired to a state of d’veikut (meditative attachment to G-d). In his ecstasy, the Baal Shem Tov began to sing a melody. This is the melody to which the rebbes of Chabad would pray on the first night of Rosh Hashanah. (source).
May the sound of the shofar this year motivate us all to recognize that we’ve been given an extraordinary opportunity this year to act for change in our country, and for a secure and peaceful future for ourselves, our children, our communities, our country and our global neighbors. Don’t just chew … vote!
To a healthy, sweet and productive new year.
(and if you’re inclined to model action instead of chewing, to wear your politics on your sleeve – or in this case, your keppe – make and wear your own Obamakah (Obama + yarmulkah); I embroidered mine after knitting and felting one based on CozyColeman‘s pattern (available here). Or get a specially-printed suede Obamakah here from Jews for Obama.