A Teaching excerpt from Rabbi Gershon Winkler --Shavuot 2009
"... These two passages in the sacred writings of the Hebrew prophet Jeremiah says it all. The first yield of the earth is like the first love you've ever experienced. Not your first boyfriend or girlfriend, not your first romance, but your first love, meaning the first time you actually felt like, wow! this is the real thing and nothing can be more real. ..."
HOD sh b'MALCHUT
Sephirat HaOmer day 47
G*D's PASSION FLOWER FLOWERS
Passion Flower returns as "first love"
- Joy Krauthammer
As I read the excerpt quoted above from Rabbi Gershon Winkler, I think of how this afternoon in my garden with my sister, Faye, I was in the Glory of Hod showing to her the dozens of Passion Flower circular flowers that are blooming, readying to bloom, and browned and dried up--have bloomed, and even a few small green hard fruits that in a few months I will be crazy in delight as I harvest and open the ripe ones.
These flowers, composed of their funny wiggly threads, are the potential of what will be. Yet they need to first die leaving no evidence of their glory before birthing their fruit. I felt the love, the first love of these fruits today in their pre-season. How does one express this?
Last year I had to cut down this 60 foot long thick Passion Flower vine because of a barnacle bug. Cut to the core, down to the trunk near the earth; no more vines, leaves, curly tentacles to grab onto the fence and each other. Can you imagine how I felt?
The gardener knew it would grow back. HOPE. Trust, Faith. I was very sad over the remains for that which I had thanked G*d for on a daily basis. Patiently all year I have been tying up the vine tendrils as they emerge, to both sides of the fence to anchor them.
Today in full sun, came back in full glory in varying maturity of openness, dozens of nature's gifts--the flowers, and I am beside myself bursting with love's glee. These flowers are for me. With whom will I share my bounty? "This is the real thing... the first yield of the earth."
Recent is Rosh Chodesh / New Moon, and readying to finish Counting of the Omer and greetShavuot.
Any minute now we are entering Sephirat HaOmer Netzach sh b'Malchut. How these vines have fought to come back in strength and joy. They fought a battle with the barnacle scale and I thought they lost (as they did for that season even with all my soapy washings) but they are now strong and have endured.
Day 47, year of my birth, meaningful to me, especially since I am a musician and that 47 is the number of the LA local musician's union. 47 for me!
Day 47, when Hod flies into the beauteous splendor of being, as in thanking G*d for the Passion flower and fruit. Thank you G*d.
Hod sh b'Malchut. The holiness of the smile seeing G*d's creation manifested here on earth, in the earth and Shekhina blesses us as she dwells amongst us, in exile, hoping we become ONE. That holy Passion Flower fruit in it's fullness of seed, is ONE. It is so humble hanging onto the vine for months at a time, hiding, until when finally ripe, in it's wrinkled state dropping with no one to catch it, and lies in the dirt waiting to be found. And hopefully not the opossum or raccoon or squirrel with its hungry fingers.
Soon we enter Yesod sh b'Malchut, the creation relationship of earth bonding with Shekhina. As new flowers unfold from their cocoon, I celebrate the birth, the "mystery manifested." I am in love with the "first yield of the earth."
Manna From Heaven:
One love, shalom and abundant blesSings of harmony, wholeness, health and joy to you,
"Serve G*d With Joy"
"Ivdu Et Hashem B'Simcha" - Psalm 100:2
May the refinement work of cosmic cleansing that I do on myself during the 49 days of Kabbalistically Counting the Sephirat HaOmer help me to mamash/truly be who I am, and need to become. I desire to delete klipot/husks (negative influences) and again ready myself for Shavuot by strengthening, elevating and perfecting my midot/character traits.