Congregation Neve Shalom Celebrating Imaginative Judaism
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In the Rainbow Village • (314)863-4366

Counting of the Omer, 2007

Week 4 Intentions

Baruch atah adonay eloheynu melech ha'olam asher kidshanu bemitzvotav vetzivanu al sefirat ha'omer.

Blessed are you, HASHEM, our God, who makes us holy with mitzvot and has commanded us to count the Omer.

Ha-yom sh'nayim v'esrim yom, shehaym shelosha shavuot v'yom echad ba-omer. Today is twenty-two days, which equals three weeks and one day of the Omer.

Chesed of Netzach

birds whistle: "awake!
     it would be so cruel to let
            your life be stillborn."


The counting week 4
Chesed in Netzach

Mashpia part 9
Mashpia is an influence a spiritual mentor

Too complicated

Explanation required

Show me something else

Sticks and twigs

That's it

Be a natural



Excerpted and condensed from “The Book of Our Heritage” by Eliyahyu Kitov

Our Sages who delved into the deeper meanings of the Torah, meanings that are hidden from ordinary understanding, have associated this period of seven weeks with seven attributes which are personified by our great ancestors.  These characteristics are essential to the continued existence of the world.

Abraham personifies the virtue of loving kindness.  Through his selfless love of mankind, the whole world was brought nearer to God.

Itzchak personifies strength of character and from him the world learned to fear God.  His whole being was devoted to the service of God and to the fear of Him.

Ya'akov was the personification of glory.  All his actions, whether towards God or towards his parents, towards Esav or Lavan, whether they concern the struggle with the angel, his treatment of his children or his attitude to Pharoh--all were perfect.

Moshe typifies eternity--the eternity of the Torah.

Aharon's special characteristic was splendor.  He loved peace and pursued peace, he loved mankind and brought them near to the Torah.

Yosef typifies the virtue which lies at the foundation of all morality.  The righteousness of Yoself's life was such that he rose to the greatest possible heights of sanctity.

King David typifies sovereignty. It was not David's wisdom or strength that brought him to kingship, nor did he achieve is simply by inheritance.  His kingdom was granted him by the King of Kings.

Each of these seven qualities is closely intertwined with the others and all are inter-dependent. None exists in isolation. Kindness without strength of character becomes soft heartedness.  Glory without kindness leads to sin.  None of these qualities is complete if kindness is lacking. Each characteristic has a light of its own which it sheds on the others even while it absorbs their light, but the quality of loving kindness is greater than all of them.

Our Sages have designated the seven weeks of counting as an opportunity for correcting the various defects of character by stressing these seven special qualities.

Susan Shender

Ha-yom sh'losha v'esrim yom, shehaym shelosha shavuot ushnay yamim ba-omer. Today is twenty-three days, which equals three weeks and two days of the Omer.

Gevurah of Netzach

like arrows, her words
     flew, found their mark, once she learned
            the art of silence.


Gevurah of Netzach

Today is the 23rd day of the Counting

What To Do
Lament        Simplified

Begin with the dead
Mourn for them
Some time in the future our tears may wash us clean
Blood bones hearts
Some time into the future
Discerned from the heart's deep wisdom
We will lift our hands with the wisdom of knowing
What to do

First we will live into the questions
Begin with the smaller ones
Feeling our way into the larger ones
The wisdom of discernment begins with the heart

Sorrow for loss person by person
Family by family
First silence to receive suffering
Face to face
Breath to breath
The unintegrated loss of possibility
Our dreams intact a few days ago
Dreams less durable now
Align our hearts with the world heart

There will come a time
We may not mark when
From the works of our hands
Restorative peace will flow like a fountain
As if another world had leaked its wisdom into our own
As if we had prepared to receive it


Ha-yom arba-a v'esrim yom, shehaym shelosha shavuot u'shelosha yamim ba-omer. Today is twenty-four days, which equals three weeks and three days of the Omer.

Tiferet of Netzach

how god formed canyons:
     he urged the winds and rivers,
             "practice makes perfect."


Counting the Omer
today is day 24

tiferet in netzach

Mashpia part 10
Mashpia is an influence, a spiritual mentor

Impossible muse
of kindness
immeasureable beauty

agent of

the unseen



Tiferet b' in Netzach

I saw her face 

once, it was like a vision 
a prayer, blue and shrouded

and out of this mystery,
she arose like a chorus.

I recognized her then
in memory I see now
she is every face
that gives the vision
of G-d.

Everytime I walk outside
down past the sidewalk
near where the river bends
I picture her enter and listen-
the breeze, her presence
breath, brushes open my lips 
until I become the song,
aloft, alive, and adrift within
her sacred, eternal melody.

jeff briggs

Ha-yom chami-sha v'esrim yom, shehaym shelosha shavuot v'arba-a yamim ba-omer. Today is twenty-five days, which equals three weeks and four days of the Omer.

Netzach of Netzach

over driving, honking
     sax riffs, jr. shouts, "just
            keep on keepin' on."


It's day 25 of the Counting

Netzach in Netzach

What to do with
And beauty
The candle of multiple wicks
Bound up together
The souls over the divide
When we die

What to do with our hands
When our souls are going home
God the river flowing through our souls

What to do when
The nest returns to the trees
Where to meet the fragile God of nests
The arms of angels reaching for the sky

How to track the heroic stories
Water through a rock

Where to find nests
Be found


Ha-yom shi-sha v'esrim yom, shehaym shelosha shavuot va-chamisha yamim ba-omer. Today is twenty-six days, which equals three weeks and five days of the Omer.

Hod of Netzach

like sunlight to the fern,
     or color to your eyes, your work
            is given to you.


Today is the 26th day of the counting

Hod in Netzach

God of Nests

O God of the Inevitable return of nests
Resting places on the Ground
Horizontal dance of limbs
Drawings on rocks
Twigs stacked in a field

The forest fronting a nest
The arms of angels holding the upper worlds

Holy God of rocks stacked next the path
Holy God of Release
Return to the land the air
The sun the rain

O God Bumped up against place
HaMakom -- Holy God of Place
The whole world that place
That place not
The world


Ha-yom shiva v'esrim yom, shehaym shelosha shavuot v'shi-sha yamim ba-omer. Today is twenty-seven days, which equals three weeks and six days of the Omer.

Yesod of Netzach

no escape from your
     image in the mirror, from being
            known by your habits.


The Counting

Today is day 27 of the Omer

Yesod of Netzach

How good it is

to live in the


Which is here

I am [as usual]

Quoting Blue who used to say

Wherever you go

There you are


Ha-yom shemonah v'esrim yom, shehaym arba-a shavuot ba-omer. Today is twenty-eight days, which equals four weeks of the Omer.

Malkut of Netzach

"when you hear sounds of
     marching atop the balsam trees,
            attack, for YHVH goes before you."


It's day 28 of the Counting
Malkhut in Netzach

I will be God
you will be human beings
we will each live
up to our dream
of one another,

if you can measure heaven above
search out the earth below
-- just as likely
I will abandon you.



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