Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Movement into Resolution

In the language of music, resolution is defined as the sound passing from a dissonant to a consonant tone or the progression of a chord from dissonance to consonance. The idea is there is movement from dissonant (inharmonious, jarring, harsh) to consonant (harmonious, pleasing, stable).

Movement isn’t possible without resolution, without a back and forth between the cacophonous to the melodious. And resolution is necessary to finalize the four steps of teshuvah, before we reach the Holy Days.

The moon has just passed its fullness, reminding us that the month of Elul is drawing to a close. Will you have come to some resolution in this final week of Elul?

Maimonides asks, “Who achieves a “complete teshuvah”? His answer, “The one who confronts the same situation in which one sinned and instead, abstains.” We resolve not to repeat our behavior even though we are fully aware that it is possible to do so.

Turning a new leaf when the leaves are beginning to fall and pile up around us isn’t easy. It takes an act of will. A break with old habits. Admitting we’ve done wrong. Starting over again.

Teshuvah means saying we are sorry and recognizing we have the ability to change. And in the process, we are blessed with a great gift – healing.

Thank you, Alden Solovy, for sending along the link to your exquisite prayer on the season we are about to enter. Your words so beautifully capture the possibility of the season. I am taking the liberty of sharing it here because it is so very on point. If you would like to read more of Alden's prayers - and hear him reading as well - go to

The Season of Healing

by Alden Solovy

This is the season of healing:

Of healing our hearts and minds,

Of healing the moments we share with each other

And the moments we share with ourselves.

This is the season of memory:

Of remembering our parents and grandparents,

The love of generations,

The holiness of our ancestors.

This is the season of stillness,

The season of silence and quiet:

Of deep breaths,

Of open eyes,

Of compassion and consolation.

This is the season of healing:

The season of grief turning to wonder,

Of loss turning toward hope,

The season that binds this year to the next,

The season that frees this year from the next,

The season that heralds the redemption of spirit

And our return to G-d’s Holy Word.

© 2010 Alden Solovy and All rights reserved.

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