Good Monday Morning to this week 3 of 2022
All my bones say, ‘Jehovah, who is like Thee, delivering the poor from the stronger than he, and the poor and needy from his plunderer.’ Psalm 35.10
When the rabbi of Lentshno’s son was a boy he once saw Rabbi Yitzhak of Vorki praying. Full of amazement he came running to his father and asked how it was possible for such a zaddik to pray quietly and simply, without giving any sign of ecstasy. “A poor swimmer,” answered his father, “has to thrash around in order to stay up in the water. The perfect swimmer rests on the tide and it carries him.”
Tales of the Hasidim by Martin Buber (1878–1965)
Hasidism is a particular form of Judaism that developed in Eastern Europe in the eighteenth century. Among its fundamental ideas is that God’s glory is present throughout the world and can be experienced everywhere and in all things. For example, prayer can be ecstatic joy that envelops the whole body. That was not entirely new in Judaism, of course. People had long applied Psalm 35:10 “All my bones shall say, ‘O LORD , who is like you?’ ” to prayer, which is why many Jews move their upper bodies back and forth while praying, but in Eastern European Hasidism the sense was much stronger, so that leaping, dancing, and ecstatic joy were added. This tale should be understood against that background.
This tale makes a statement that is at first perplexing and yet for that very reason is a persuasive insight into an important aspect of faith.
Prayer that allows itself to be borne altogether by God and rests in God.
Wishing you a good start to this week!