Experience Commonplace Deeds as Spiritual Adventures

Ekev is a great Parsha! It becomes even clearer that G!d is in need of our right actions in order to be Godself. This understanding is explored beautifully in the teachings of Abraham Joshua Heschel is his work God in Search of Man.

“This is one of the goals of the Jewish way of living: to experience commonplace deeds as spiritual adventures, to feel the hidden love and wisdom in all things.”― Abraham Joshua Heschel, God in Search of Man: A Philosophy of Judaism

Doing mitzvot is a spiritual adventure. Saying a Bracha – an expression of Wow and gratitude to the Source of a life is so needed in this world of growing distrust and discouragement. The Creator clearly needs us to do mitzvot and right actions for our own fulfillment and for God’s fulfillment.

The word Ekev in the first verse means “heel.” The translations do not capture the deeper meanings. The “heel” is how we place our steps on this Earth. It is how we walk in tune with the transcendence of the One within us, with each other and life around us. It is how we take “steps” to address the evils in society. There is a teaching in rabbinic lore summed up in the phrase “Ikvot HaMashiach”, in the footsteps of the Messiah…taking those steps that lead toward the age of justice and peace.

In Ekev we find the 2nd paragraph of the Shma in the daily prayer books. Check out Deuteronomy 11:13-21. It is about the above and, especially, how our mitzvot actions effect the earth and our climate.

May we be strengthened in taking these steps so needed today, Kadimah,  Reb David

Comments are closed.