Posts Tagged ‘יום כפור’

 

Why Do You Slumber?

Posted on: September 28th, 2022 by Alden No Comments

This new Yom Kippur meditation is inspired by the two Haftorot we read on that day. In the morning, we hear Isaiah’s great call to justice and tikkun olam (Isaiah 57:14-58:14). In the afternoon, we read the book of Jonah. The simple question asked of Jonah, asleep in the ship’s hold as a tempest pummels the boat, is the basis of the moving Sephardi piyut for S’lichot, Ben Adam Ma Lecha Nirdam?, Son of Man, Why Do You Slumber? Why, indeed, do we slumber, when it is time to awaken to our best selves, when the world calls us to action?

Why Do You Slumber?
?מה לך נרדם? / ?מה לך נרדמה
Mah lecha nirdam? / Mah lach nirdama?
Why do you slumber, (Jonah 1:6)
Child of humanity?
When your brothers die?
While your sisters cry?
While anger shakes us?
When terror breaks us?
!קום קרא אל־אלהיך
Qum kra el elohecha!
Get up, cry out to your god (Jonah 1:6),
Cry out for justice and for peace.

?מה לך נרדם? / מה לך נרדמה
Mah lecha nirdam? / Mah lach nirdama?
Why do you slumber, (Jonah 1:6)
Child of God?
Your heart is noble,
The need is global.
This is the hour,
To act with power.
!קום קרא אל־אלהיך
Qum kra el elohecha!
Get up, cry out to your god (Jonah 1:6),
Cry out for justice and for peace.

?מה לך נרדם? / מה לך נרדמה
Mah lecha nirdam? / Mah lach nirdama?
Why do you slumber, (Jonah 1:6)
Child of love?
The call is urgent,
The cry resurgent,
To embrace each other,
And bless one another.
To rise from slumber.
To live in wonder.
!קום קרא אל־אלהיך
Qum kra el elohecha!
Get up, cry out to your god (Jonah 1:6),
Cry out for justice and for peace.

© 2022 Alden Solovy and ToBendLight

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Postscript: Here’s one of many renditions of Ma Lecha Nirdam on You Tube.

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