Day Five of Week 2 (12th day of Omer): Hod in Gevurah

by Susie Davidson

 

Hod stands for humility and acknowledging limits. In concert with the restraint and discernment of Gevurah, you might want to lower those expectations. But don’t, because Hod is also associated with splendor and glory.

 

Sure, change can be difficult, and there is a certain comfort to same old same old. But it doesn’t have to be huge, insurmountable change, either. Eminent environmentalist Henry David Thoreau wrote that the journey was as important, and even perhaps more important, than the destination.

 

“In Scripture, gevurah and the plural gevurot refer to YHWH’s capability of acting like a warrior,” writes Michael Zank, who cites YHWH’s slaying of the Sea monster Rahab, which led to “the establishment of the protected order of ‘natural’ life and the acclamation of YHWH’s kingship in the assembly of the gods,” and “the act of salvation at the Reed Sea (kri’at yam suf), another combat with the element of water but now in the context of history, establishing ‘cultural’ order in the covenant of Sinai.” Zank feels that G-d’s feats can help people recognize what he calls “their shameful lack in covenantal trust and truthfulness,” and he writes of associations of such heroism of Gevurah with “the angel of salvation…or with the time or figure of messianic redemption…. [t]he enigmatic nature and wherabout of his power of historic salvation are likely to have given rise, after the hurban, to the rabbinic coinage of “The Power” (hag-gevurah) and its usages.”

 

Be the power! Take those small steps to help sustain and preserve our planet.

 

Action: Write Letters to the Editor about environmental issues. Think about joining a Community-Sponsored Agricultural (CSA) group, and how you might help to link a school, food pantry or synagogue to the CSA.

 

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