As part of our #TorahForTheResistance series by young scholars and students of Judaism and rabbinics, we offer this Counting the Omer for activists. Read more about using the Omer for activists, see previous weeks’ questions, and find below this week’s reflections designed specifically activists.
About the Omer
Between Passover and Shavuot, our tradition offers us a practice called the Counting the Omer, or Sefirat Ha’Omer. The Jewish mystical tradition has imbued this time with deeper spiritual meaning by creating a system of ‘counting’ that can help us experience different aspects of the Divine. These aspects are represented by the Kabbalistic system of sefirot, a structure representing the ten emanations through which God is revealed to us.
As activists, Sefirat Ha’Omer is a spiritual opportunity to engage with this fundamental political tension: What is the world that we want to see? Where do we encounter that world and what work is to be done?
Week Seven: Malkhut/Majesty (May 23rd-29th)
In our last week of Counting the Omer, we focus on the divine aspect of Malkhut. Malkhut represents our world, as opposed to the Divine world. This is a moment to encounter the world as it is, and to look at it honestly.
Just before we receive the Torah and its mandate for creating a just society, we must ask ourselves:
Where is our world now compared to where we want it to be? Where is there suffering, violence, and corruption? Where do we see the absence of our most deeply-held values, an erosion of our most fundamental sense of what is right?
With this sobre awareness of the state of our world, we are ready to receive divine wisdom on how to improve it.
Congratulations on completing this spiritual practice! With these seven weeks of practice, we are ready to accept the responsibility our Torah demands of us: to pursue justice, fight for the most vulnerable, and to treat others and the world with dignity.