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Sunday September 6
Today is the seventeenth day of Elul!
Yesterday in the Torah reading for Ki Tavo we read:
יז אֶת ה הֶאֱמַרְתָּ, הַיּוֹם:  לִהְיוֹת לְךָ לֵאלֹהִים....  יח וַה הֶאֱמִירְךָ הַיּוֹם, לִהְיוֹת לוֹ לְעַם סְגֻלָּה…
“17 Thou hast avouched the LORD this day to be thy God... 18 And the LORD hath avouched thee this day to be His own treasure…”
Love is a two-way street.  We choose Hashem and Hashem chooses us.  Ideally, these movements are simultaneous.  However, in times of distance it takes someone to make the first move and lean into the relationship in order to bring about repair.  According to kabbalistic thought there are times when we must make the first move (itaruta diletata) and there are times when Hashem makes the first move (itaruta dileyla).  The Sfat Emet (Ki Tavo) explains that based on the order of these pesukim which are always read in Elul, we see that Elul is a time when we, the Jewish people, have to make the first move.  We have the ability to arouse the heavenly desire and love through our own stirrings in this world. By us taking the first steps towards Hashem we will naturally evoke a response of love in the Heavens opening up our relationship once again and creating a real moment filled with reconciliation and mutual desire and promise for the future.  We often wait for others to make the first move...Sometimes we even wait until it is too late.  Today, let us not stand on ceremonies and let us not wait any longer.  Let us make the first move towards Hashem with the faith that Hashem will be moved to do the same.

Fri, September 18 2020 29 Elul 5780