Chayei Sarah – חַיֵּי שָׂרָה (Genesis 23:1−25:18)
This Week’s Torah Portion: Chayei Sarah – חַיֵּי שָׂרָה (Genesis 23:1−25:18)
Chayei Sarah completes the lives of both Sarah and Abraham. We open with Sarah’s burial and close with Abraham’s death.
“Abraham was old, advanced in age, and God had blessed Abraham in everything.” (Genesis 24:1)
What were the blessings in Abraham’s life? His life was filled with trials and tests of his faith in the divine, culminating in his near sacrifice of his beloved son Isaac.
Rabbi Neil J Loevinger explains based on midrashic interpretation, that at the end of Abraham’s life he had gained a deep self-knowledge and discipline; was able to experience harmony in his family; had enough material possessions so that he never suffered want; and came through life’s challenges with a sense of peace, a sense that the “tests” were not so dramatic anymore. “Everything,” in R. Levi’s interpretation, means all aspects of life, both the inner world and outward reality. It seems to imply a harmony between one’s spirituality and one’s situation.”
Torah implies that Abraham did not achieve this spiritual fulfillment until he was “advanced in age.”
While there is truth to the adage “older and wiser” there are many practices we might engage in at any age to work towards this sense of spiritual harmony. Through the practice of Jewish Spiritual Direction, both as a directee and a trained director and guide for others I have found a deep sense of connection and spiritual growth, and fullness. Jewish Spiritual Direction is a practice led by a trained director in one on one companionship or in a small group environment. Together we explore your life and notice the many ways the Divine shines through all of its aspects, from the basic day to day to life’s challenges and greatest joys.
Want to know more? Please reach out to Cantor Lauren. Let’s work together to discover “the blessings in everything.”