One of my greatest struggles in life has been shifting from being a synagogue rabbi, and all that entails, to not being a synagogue rabbi and all that entails (or doesn’t entail as the case may be).
As the rabbi of a synagogue my professional identity, my families identity, religious identity, communal identity and personal identity were all (for better or worse, appropriately or inappropriately) bound up in that title, “Rabbi B.”
My thoughts, which became my beliefs, which became my reality simply said, this is not WHAT YOU DO, rather, this is WHO YOU ARE.
And when what we do becomes who we are confusion and suffering always, eventually, follows. Sooner or later what we do inevitably changes. And at some point what we do becomes what we once did. Whether it’s our profession, our relationships, our passions…. you name it – nothing lasts forever. Everything changes, and sooner or later we move on, or it moves on. That’s just the way it is.
For the past couple years, on every level, I have been sorting through both what I do, as well as who I am. And as I’ve made this journey I have discovered that it begins in the imagination.
What are the images I have created and held onto about myself – why I’m here, what I can do, what am I supposed to become?
- What are the images that stifle me and no longer serve me?
- What images do I want to incorporate into my life?
- What images will liberate me, energize me and allow me to function at my highest potential and move me in the direction of my dreams.
This is what it means to turn to your imagination. It isn’t about watching Disney movies or visiting the museum (though they can often spark some wonderful new images indeed).
Our thoughts are simply images. The images we hold onto become our beliefs. Our beliefs form our behavior. Our behavior results in our reality. And it all begins in the architectural blueprints of our imagination.
You want a new identity?
You want a different direction?
You want a more meaningful life?
Then jettison the inhibiting images and replace them with images of possibility, creativity and freedom.
It begins in the imagination.
Gotta run. The Sabbath is starting. That’s my day to unplug, rejuvenate and re-imagine what is possible. It’s my imagination vacation every Saturday. I hope you carve out some time for yourself to do the same. That’s how we consciously design who we are and express it in all that we do.
Have a Shabbat Shalom, peaceful Sabbath, wonderful weekend and glorious imagination vacation these holidays – or whenever you choose to re-image who you are and what you do!
Check out this weeks blogs on imagination:
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