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My Oasis. Our Oasis.

My Oasis. Our Oasis.

Thursday, 7 December, 2017 - 2:22 pm

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Why is Monotheism such a big deal?

I can see why G-d, and responsibility to a Higher Authority, is a critical backbone to morality. But who really cares if it’s one, or two, or seventeen gods?

We do.

Or at least we should.

Accepting Monotheism isn’t just committing ourselves to one Deity. Monotheism, at least through a Jewish lens, means committing ourselves to a life of Oneness. When we recite the Shema, a thrice daily prayer which proclaims “Hear O Israel, the Lord is our G-d, the Lord is One,” we’re proclaiming that our complex lives, the disjointed and sometimes fractured reality we experience, are all part of the great Divine Oneness. My health, my kids’ soccer game, my boss’s attitude and my 401k are all part of my Divine journey. Scattered as my life may seem, everything can and should fit into my expedition toward a life of meaning.

In my mind’s eye, each of my life’s facets is a distinct pearl. When I consciously infuse these ‘pearls’ with vision and purpose, I am stringing them together with a strand of Holiness. My life is now a beautiful necklace.

This helps explain why we traditionally cover our eyes when reciting the Shema:

My physical eyes, my natural instinct, show me a world of pain and fracture. Where’s the Oneness? So I cover my eyes, because I need to the world see with my soul. I need to envision a world created by One G-d, with One purpose, with an inherent Oneness waiting to be discovered.

I need to see my world as a Shema world. That gives me a clear compass, a safe haven, and an energizing motivator that I really need in today’s world.

Which is a reason Chabad Chassidic thought is so central to my life. In a way, Chabad theology is one large ‘Shema,’ a drive to find unity and connectedness within all parts of the Torah and within life itself. Chabad thought allows my mind to hover above reality, so that my life’s details don’t seem like disjointed puzzle pieces. They come together as parts of a holistic, meaningful life.

Chassidic thought is an oasis in a rocky world.

So thank you, Chabad Rebbes.

Thank you so much.

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