Shine the Divine:

Creativity IS a Spiritual Practice

When we see through our hearts, we recognize that every single one of us is infused with creativity. Divine Sparks are embedded in everyone and everything. It's up to us to be courageous, to look and listen deeply, to find the sparks, gather and release them back into the universe, transformed into something new. Join me as we wake up to the sacred-ordinary blessings waiting to greet us each and every day.


Monday, September 26, 2011

Gathering Light V

This week I am gathering light as I reflect upon my life.
Several blogging friends have written messages to me suggesting that I have nothing to ask forgiveness for. I thank you for your words of kindness, and realize I should have shared the explanation that follows in the first gathering light post. Part of the preparation for the holy days is to ask for forgiveness, selichah

I have made mistakes, made unfair judgments of others and myself as well. I have said things I regret, and have refrained from speaking up when it would have been better if I had spoken. I have been harsh when gentleness was what was needed most. In Jewish tradition it is a spiritual practice to publicly and personally ask for forgiveness for any hurt we have caused knowingly or unknowingly. Not only do we ask for forgiveness, we agree to forgive others, and ourselves, set an intention and take action to change and of course ask God to forgive us for all the times we have "missed the mark."

Elohai n'shama shenata'ta bi t'hora hi.
God, the soul you placed in me is pure.

While the soul the Holy Blessed One placed in me (and you) is pure, my heart is not, not in all moments, and neither is my mind. Unkind thoughts and emotions pass through me the same as they do any other human being.  There are most certainly times when I behave in ways that are not compassionate, when I am thoughtless and not as aware or caring as I could be. Please understand that this is not about me being “down” or  “hard” on myself, it is a tradition of self-reflection and direct action that I value.

“… compassion means being sensitive to another person's soul; it requires remembering that each one of us—however coarse and imperfect we may be on the outside—is endowed with a perfect Divine soul on the inside. And second, compassion means transcending our own comfort zone out of love for another.” ~Rabbi Simon Jacobson

This week while continuing to gather light, I have also been consciously shining it into the dark spaces, the uncomfortable places within, so that I may soften, grow, and draw nearer to the Root of Compassion, the One who nurtures my pure essence and birthed all that is, was, will be. 

May we all be blessed with the strength, courage and wisdom to recognize when we are wrong, to say I'm sorry with an open, honest heart, and to do our best to make the changes necessary to repair what we have broken.


  1. Of course. I should have known. I constantly learn from you, am much more in the light because of the time I spend here with you. Thank you for this and so much more.

  2. One of those mornings where you shared exactly the words I needed to hear. I needed a dose of self-forgiveness this morning and you provided that in your unique and loving way. thanks

  3. Laura,

    I wish this was standard fare with all Jews....I had a terrible experience with an Orthodox Jew three years ago: it left horrible scars on my heart. He, abusive, evil actually, violated everything I know in the Torah...while insisting that he was a Jew. He was an abomination. I went to Torah classes for almost a year so I, brought up as a Christian, could understand just how far he was off from this religion. You have given me balm for a very sore heart.

    He is just part of a long line of false people: those who use religion as a shield for their abominable actions. No different from Christians who do the same, or any other religion.

    Thank you, Laura, for spreading the beauty of the High Holy days around. It goes a long way to heal the Spirit amongst people.

    Lady Nyo

  4. Such beautiful lighting! :0)

    We all make mistakes. Hugs!

  5. Beautifully said, most of us do have regrets...etc....

  6. I always love to read your posts. I'd say that they tend to clear my mind and my attitude towards life.

  7. Laura, I love your transparency and sharing her in readiness for the "high holy days" to begin. We can all claim regrets and sorrows. How powerful it is to release them! It reminds me very much of the 12 steps and how one makes amends to all who have been hurt because of a loved one's addiction.

    I tell you that two of the most powerful moments in my life came when two of my dearest loves finally broke through their addiction and made amends. Mutual weeping all around.

    Your post reminds me that we should be ever so aware how easy it is to hurt someone. We never intend to but it does happen. I love your bravery.

    You are my anamcara always...

  8. It is so important to be able to forgive ourselves and others, even though it is not an easy thing to do. I also work on this every day and most of the time I am good at it...but every once in a while a hit a snag :o(

  9. This is my first visit here, and I see you use the words shine and light, and I chose the word "shine" for my guiding word this year. We have a connection.

  10. Wonderful tradition! Thank you for explaining it. To me September is the perfect time of year to ask for forgiveness and start the new year with a "clean slate."

  11. so beautifully written... and thank you for reminding me to be compassionate... xo

  12. Laura,
    I have not been around in a long time. Your last few posts are so beautiful. Yours words so true.
    Love to you my friend.

  13. I have loved the teaching that "Forgiveness is the key to happiness" ever since I first came to meet it...your courage and vulnerability are true and so very timely.


  14. A profoundly beautiful post. Thank you, friend.

  15. I am with during this time of deep reflection, and self-evaluation, my sweet soul-sister.

    May the year which will be opening up before us bring good and improved health, a stronger understanding of our fellow man and woman, hitting the target just a little bit better than we were able to before, joy, and love. So much love.

    With big hugs and lots of love,

  16. Beautiful sharing; forgiveness such deep practice...


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