December 21 2018
Shabbat is a day of rest, reflection, and renewal.
This weekly spread is offered to help us question: how do we want to shape our sacred time?
Each Friday night, we invite you to light Shabbat candles with us and reflect on the state of the world and our responsibility to it as we read through the Hebrew alphabet and its wisdom. Let this practice support you in welcoming in the Sabbath as we collectively tend to and hold our care, questioning, and actions this week.
BEIT // THIS WEEK
This week, what came up or was present for us?
When beit comes up, we’re thinking of home. Homes of wood and brick. Homes of family and friends. Homes of choice and circumstance. At this time of the year, we can feel uprooted and unsettled from all this moving between homes. As the second letter of the alphabet, beit brings up feelings of duality, of being pulled between opposites that threaten to split us in two.
Opening the word bracha for “blessing,” beit can also support us in noticing that which is possible, pleasurable, and palpable. Make it a special practice today to write down all the good things you remember from this week, what you’re looking forward to next week, and what you’re learning from naming your blessings.
To stay grounded in the feeling of home as you travel, take the crystal from your windowsill and keep it in your pocket. Pack a book you’ve read a hundred times. Video chat a friend you couldn’t take with you. If you’re staying home, go outside and bring a piece of the earth inside. Put up that piece of art you’ve been meaning to hang. Invite someone over for dinner. Find ways to create and celebrate home together.
TAV // THIS SABBATH
This sabbath, what nourishment do we need and what deserves our sacred time?
As the last letter of the alphabet, tav offers us completion of another cycle. As we close out the year, take this opportunity to reflect on where you’ve stepped into the light and where you’ve chosen to stay in the dark. Starting the word teshuvah for “repentance” and tikkun for “repair,” tav requires us to complete that which is unfinished before we can move into a new beginning.
This Sabbath, look back at the path you set on and the path you ended up on. Offer apologies and amends to yourself and others. As we try to restore our sense of self and purpose, tav reminds us that there are shards of the sacred within us and we can always return to them. Reconcile the past year so you may begin the new year renewed.
KETER // THIS WORLD TO COME
Moving towards this world to come, how do we hold our values and bring the ways we want to build into the next week?
As we bring a piece of Shabbat into our upcoming week, keter offers us a rare taste of this world to come. Often translated as “crown,” keter is not what is in our mind but around and beyond it. The highest of the sefirot, keter asks us what exists above our heads, before our ideas, behind our thoughts? We’re invited to take into account that which is beyond – beyond seeing, beyond knowing, beyond explanation.
This week, let yourself be pulled into that which you find impossible and irresistible. Cultivate this feeling of closeness and connection that the illogical yet intuitive can bring. Open yourself up to the potential of the unknown and notice where it shows up in the week ahead.
Let us know how this reading sits with you and what it’s asking you to bring into your life with the hashtag above. As always, take what you need from the cards and leave what you don’t. We’ll see you next week. Shabbat Shalom!
Maya Sungold is a facilitator, farmer, and fiber artist who works through practices of cultivation and collaboration to support relationships in continued resistance and resilience. In spinning both fiber and web, they build change and creative adaptation, queer time and radical imaginings, tender accountability and perfectly possible contradiction into their art-making and community-building. Their work aims to shape space and structure for connection, reflection, and creation to resource us as we live into the world to come. You can connect with them on Instagram at @soulxstitch.
Help us build a sustainable future for Arq.
With your support - which makes a big difference - we can keep building an inclusive space for all people to explore their own Jewish connection, no matter their starting point. We're working hard to make something you'll love.
Become a member and help shape and sustain Arq's future.