Sunday, May 02, 2010

Body and Soul are One

היום שלשה ושלשים יום שהם ארבעה שבועות וחמשה ימים בעמר
Today is the thirty-third day, making four weeks and five days of the omer
חוד שבהוד

A day of humility in a week of humility

I have a habit of grabbing whichever blank-enough notebook is nearest when needing notepaper. I use binders to organize notes, so if I need to make a dedicated volume, I just transfer those pages to their new home.

The notebook I'm presently using for my Hebrew class is the same notebook I used at a Jewish text study group in December, 2008. It does seem appropriate, as these notes contain a good amount of Hebrew. Part of studying Hebrew text is looking at the different meanings and nuances of the words. I need to see the word or phrase in question, not a transliteration. Along with learning to speak the language, I'm hoping to improve my writing and reading skills.

An advantage of keeping the same book for different teachings is that you get to revisit the earlier notes as you leaf through to the new ones. As I started my last bit of preparation for tonight's Hebrew class, my eyes fell on a phrase I wrote during a study of the Shema and it's surrounding blessings:
In Judaism, there's a relationship between the moral and the physical.

This followed notes on the word כבוד - kavod, defined as honor, glory, being present, heavy, liver--the heaviest organ of the body. The ancient sages described the liver as the seat of the soul. There are notes on light - Universal Light, Light of Zion, Light of Torah. There's some discourse on listening as an intent--listening to God through the Torah. And there's the physical and spiritual representation through head and heart.

This direct relationship between tangible and intangible brings the practice it's oneness. It is another way it meshes with my yoga practice, as they both stand on the tenet that mindfulness is a unity of body and soul. Together, they keep a place of Shalom-ness, of Whole-ness, of Peace as a part of my life.

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