Celebrate new beginnings
Every year, we complete the cycle of reading the entire Torah, celebrate a bit, and then start over from the beginning, and this was the week we began reading the Torah all over again.
This is a great metaphor for life because the stories are the same every year—the characters, plot lines, dialogue, moral dilemmas, and all the drama is the same—but the way we interpret them can change depending on our stage in life, how old our kids (or parents) are, what stressors are occupying our minds at that moment, and what’s happening in the world at that time. We can learn entirely new lessons, discover new mysteries and be consumed by new questions by seeing the same old stories through a different lens.
In many ways, this is a recipe for living a life filled with “awe, wonder and radical amazement,” which is what Abraham Joshua Heschel says should be our goal in life. They may be the same trees we see each morning, it may be the same commute to work, it could be the same breakfast we eat every day, but if we can experience life through fresh eyes, then we can overcome the boredom that comes from repetition. Take my dog, for example—she jumps up on our bed every morning and every morning she greets us with the same excitement as if it were the first time seeing us. Heschel would approve!
My goal is it see each day as a new beginning, and to have just one-tenth the joy of my mini-Goldendoodle.