Thursday, September 28, 2006

OK GOD, 'SPLAIN ME

I'm not a religious person. Sometimes I think that if my daughter-in-law knew what I ate, she'd never let me kiss the babies again.

But, I am a believer. And G-d and I have a running conversation that has been going on for years and years. Once in a while, I get the feeling, that when He's bored, G-d comes to watch me in my kitchen.

And G-d knows, He has a wicked sense of humour. You know that second when your hand slips and the bottle of olive oil starts to flow across the kitchen floor? Or, my second favourite, when that egg falls and cracks open by your feet?

Those are the times I look upwards and whisper, 'Cute, G-d. Not funny. But cute.'

I love having a kosher home. I love that everyone can eat comfortably in my house. And I have always treasured the holidays and the different food and customs each brings.

I guess you could call me 'flexidox'.

A dear friend wrote me the other day and asked why, when Jews are praying so hard on Yom Kippur, that G-d inscribe them for another year in The Book of Life...and why, when Jews are facing their sins and asking forgiveness...and why, on this Day of Atonement, when Jews are fasting...

...do we wish each other an easy fast? Tsom Kal. צום קל.

Made me stop and think.

I asked my oldest son, the religious one, and he said that only secular Jews wish each other an easy fast. Is that true? Are we...the uncovered head group... looking for an easy way out? While the black hats and kippa srugah fellows aren't? Are they busy beating their breasts while we are counting the minutes till we can have our honey cake and tea?

I read tehilim every day...psalms. It all started when my youngest was in the army and got sick. As time passed, I became more and more frantic to get him to a good doctor and find out what was wrong with my baby. But the army marches to the beat of a different drummer then mom's do. We march according to our heart and when we get scared they beat very fast.

So, I turned to my daughter-in-law who we transported from Bnei Brak and asked her,
'Honey, when you say tehilim, will you please send a prayer for my baby?'
'Marallyn, it will mean a lot more if that prayer comes from his Mother.'

Tricky!!! Now what? I was stuck. So, I started. A little here and a little more there. And the strange thing was I liked it. It felt right, this psalm business. Jewish Meditation.

Then I started making deals with G-d.
'Listen, Lord. If You will make sure my baby is all right, I'll...'

Oops. You don't make a deal with The Lord and then put it in your pocket and sit down on it. I mean, it's not like a TV program where if you don't like what's behind door number three, you can exchange it for the contents on the big box on the stage.

So, I figured my safest deal was to promise to say tehilim every day. And in all the years since, I may not have had time to say them all but I get to them. Except one strange day when I forgot and had to go to the Rabbis for advice. Ptew, I'm safe.

So, here I am a flexidox Jew, who reads tehilim (and now I'm stuck with Perek Shirah too, don't ask...no English translation and it's all about crickets or something talking to God. Supposed to be really heavy stuff. I kinda like it) and fasts on Yom Kippur.

And horrors, of horrors, my fast has always been an easy one, tfu tfu tfu. Well, except for one year when I drank too much water and didn't think I would make it home safely from Shul. But, that's another story.

So, is my fast easy because I'm not suffering enough? Because I don't have enough sins to atone for? Impossible!!!

Am I insulting you when I send out those emails hoping that you are all inscribed in the Book of Life once again for another year? And that that year be a sweet and healthy one? And that you all have a tsom kal, an easy fast?

I hope not. Because that's really what I wish you. A sweet year. A healthy year. A year of happy days and peaceful nights. A year of simchas. And an easy fast.

G'mar Hatima Tova.

Have a great day...stay safe...and thanks for dropping in.

21 Comments:

At 10:40 PM, Blogger Val said...

Wow. REALLY nicely written.

 
At 12:35 AM, Blogger Markbnj said...

And I am ROTFLMAO, back here in NJ, getting ready for MY fast.

etc etc. l'shona tova tikva tavu (I dont have hebrew installed (drats).

Markb

 
At 12:50 AM, Blogger marallyn ben moshe said...

hi val...thanks so much for dropping in and for your kind words...really appreciate it...shanah tova

 
At 12:52 AM, Blogger marallyn ben moshe said...

hi markbnj...i hope you have an easy fast and thanks so very much for writing...how're things in nj??? ahhhh the great US of A

 
At 1:11 AM, Anonymous the guv said...

Wouldn't it be simply grand if I could answer all of your religious questions?

Hell, let's face it, I haven't answers for most of your brilliant, eclectic questions, let alone those pertaining exclusively to the formal practices of Judaism !

Having said all THAT, I am, nevertheless, delighted to be able to contribute a small something to today's blog.

WHEN YOU DROP EGGS ON THE FLOOR, POUR LOTS OF SALT ALL OVER THE SLIMY CRITTERS ... THE VISCOUS MESS WILL TURN INTO A MANAGEABLE MASS THAT YOU WILL BE ABLE TO LIFT EASILY WITH A SHEET OR TWO OF PAPER TOWELLING.

You're welcome. And, because I am a secular Jew in poor standing, I'm not afraid to wish you Tsom Kal.

The Guv

 
At 1:12 AM, Blogger marallyn ben moshe said...

ahhhh guv...you know everything...salt on the eggs eh??? wow...a sweet shanah tova to you my dear friend and tsom kal...with love always...stay safe

 
At 3:48 PM, Anonymous d&t said...

Happy New Year, Marallyn -- Thanks for your lovely sentiment. My name was written in the Book of Life when I accepted Jesus Christ as my Savior and Lord back on November 25, 1966 at 10:15 PM MST. Blessings to you and family, you stay safe as well. God bless.
Hugs, D & T

 
At 3:49 PM, Blogger marallyn ben moshe said...

dear d&t...and you will always be special to me...stay safe...and thanks for dropping in

 
At 6:18 PM, Blogger Jack's Shack said...

Have an easy fast.

 
At 6:26 PM, Blogger marallyn ben moshe said...

shalom jack...you too...i've been sitting here forever thinking of my five songs...you are bad...deliciously bad...an easy fast and stay safe :)))))

 
At 8:04 PM, Blogger Houston said...

I followed your comment on my blog right back over to your delightful, stream-of-consciousness testimony about your beliefs. I am your new fan.

May we all find peace this new year.

 
At 1:19 AM, Blogger marallyn ben moshe said...

shalom houston...i loved your blog...ahhhhhh texas...when i was in college i had a friend maynard...made the best darn chili in the universe...and he gave me one of my two most favourite lines...'marallyn, you are so green that, honey, if you stood on a mountain no one would see you'...haven't thought of old maynard until i went and read your blog...amen to the peace this year...stay safe and thanks for dropping in (dancing with myself...what a title) ps the other line came from my principal the day i told him i was leaving teaching and moving to jerusalem...'marallyn, every school needs a teacher just like you...but only one!'... look for you soon...a sweet new year houston

 
At 8:45 AM, Anonymous Chavah said...

My name was written in the Lamb's Book of Life in 1953. Only has to be written once 'cause G-d doesn't have an eraser for names, only sins! PTL!! You know the rest of the story ;o)
I'll pray for you an inspired fast full of insight and revelation knowledge, and I'll pray the same for me.
Shabbat Shalom dear friend.
Chavah

 
At 1:11 PM, Blogger marallyn ben moshe said...

ah chavahleh...between your prayers and mine, maybe we'll make it safely to the other side...a sweet new year my dear friend...stay safe

 
At 10:21 PM, Anonymous Ess said...

Loved it Mar..You are such a good story teller

 
At 10:25 PM, Blogger marallyn ben moshe said...

thanks ess...i really appreciate it...a sweet year to you my friend...one day, ess...one day :)))stay safe

 
At 8:57 AM, Anonymous js said...

On occasions I write to bloggers where warrented..I live in Canada(Quebec) and received "why I`m proud to be a Jew"

In my home office are two flags , one Canadian and one Israeli; and side by side I might add.....the CDN flag being slightly larger

From time to time I am queried , or I see a look of puzzelment on ones face : as to why two flags;.... or how come the Israeli flag hangs beside the Cdn. flag. .............. All this meaning BUT "your a CDN.."

And so to prevent an embarassing ,or argumentative situation:............... I say that I love my country Canada, with all it`s minor faults, BUT I also love my other country Israel

Explaining the above to a non Jew is like building a brick wall without mortar.It just don`t "go"

Thank you so much for making me think more often of "Why I`m proud to be a Jew"

 
At 8:58 AM, Blogger marallyn ben moshe said...

dear js...thank you so very much for writing...you have no idea how much i appreciate your taking the time and your very kind words...it isn't easy living abroad and being a visible Jew...bless you...i hope you and your family have an easy fast...gmar hatimah tova...and a sweet new year...again thanks for writing...stay safe...shalom, marallyn

 
At 3:42 AM, Anonymous yehupitz said...

Hi Marilyn,

Here is the answer to your question:

http://hirhurim.blogspot.com/2006/08/fast-greeting.html

Great blog. Family members have been fans for years, no, Decades!

 
At 10:53 PM, Blogger marallyn ben moshe said...

yehupitz!!!i haven't heard that word in years!!! nu so now i'm playing jewish geography...show yourself...cuz i know i know you and love you and yours too...i just know it...thanks for dropping in and for the blogsite...found it...tx...stay safe...oy yehupitz

 
At 6:05 PM, Anonymous sarah said...

Loved this post. I understand your "flexidox" point of view; I jokingly describe myself as Jew- ish, instead of Jewish. :)

 

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