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  • Writer's pictureRandy Lubratich

11 Elul 5783/August 28, 2023

by Cantor Joanna Alexander


A cleansing Breath

This summer I could taste the air.

It flowed down from the Canadian Wildfires interrupting our programming and breathing at camp.

Suddenly I wanted to wear a mask again.

Suddenly the chanichim were frightened.

Suddenly we remembered that the air can hold something scary, even as it is unseen.


But the wind blew, and the trees breathed, and the air changed to be a tasteless gas once again.

How remarkable the self-healing of the wind, the cleaning ability of a brand new day.

How glorious the connectedness and distance of our world.

We breathe in and out, the wind goes round.

We breathe in and out, the sun rises and sets.

We breathe in and out, and once again we face ourselves as we turn again to the time of returning.

Some of what we face we have done knowingly and with intention.

Some of what we have done we seek out knowledge of its harm or health.

Like the air we breathe, we cannot always tell when we have been healthy in the world or when destruction has followed in our wake.

We turn and return, we breath in and out, we must account for our time, its ups, downs and imbalanced acts.

We turn and return like the wind, to a cleaner, more forgiving air.

More open to others, more dedicated to God, more free of the burdens we share.


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