Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Up on the Roof

I started writing this post a couple days ago and, well, life in Tsfat took over and I never had a chance to finish. The brief summary: showed up Sunday to surprise my leader from Birthright and go on a hike he was leading --- and how wonderful it was to hike with him, having an hours-long conversation that was so nourishing to the soul, we ended up being surprised by chevre from the trip waiting at the bottom of the trail, it was wonderful; three days of the klezmer festival here in Tsfat, evenings of a ton of beautiful music ranging from traditional klezmer to all sorts of off-shoots, spending days at Livnot making music, reading, writing, hanging with the chevre; went on a beautiful hike yesterday with friends old and new. Now sitting here debating what the next step will be.

Next week, I will most likely be heading on a 4-5 day hike with some friends, the first chunk of the Israel trail. It is an amazing way to see the land, to really connect with people, to push myself beyond what I've done. Another new experience to savor. A long hike, pushing myself physically, mentally, spiritually beyond what I have experienced before... a long walking meditation, gratitude for every step, every moment I have, moments here, moments anywhere. I am continually reminded of how fleeting everything is, how quickly lives can change, do change.

I was reading a book by Abraham Joshua Heschel the other day and came across a quote that really resonated with me: "Living truth is the blending of the universal and the individual, of idea and understanding, of distance and intimacy, the ineffable and the expressible, the timeless and the temporal, body and soul, time and space."

This truth, whatever it is, is what I have been trying to find within myself here, what I've luckily started to see clearly again. It's an endeavor, taking this thread and adding the layers to grow it to a string, a rope, my entire being. It's probably the most important endeavor one can take on, and it should never end. Well, at least I don't think it should.

I continually offer my gratitude for this time, coming so quickly to an end. For the beautiful people I have met, and that I continue to meet. This country is, more than anything else, about the people. I will take them with me more than anything else. The land is a close second, but the people... Grateful for this time to reflect, to refind my truths, to discover new truths, to be in the moment every moment. To find intention, to move with intention, always. To experience wonder and amazement at every turn.

So grateful. So overwhelmingly grateful.

Kol tuv, everyone.

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