Rabbi Dovid Saks
529 Wyoming Ave.
Scranton, PA 18509
108 N. Abington Rd.
Clarks Summit, PA 18411
As a last ditch effort to capture the kingís feelings of compassion and to save his life, as the son was led past the king, he began playing the same music that his father had lovingly and skillfully played for the king over the years.
When the king heard the familiar music he recalled the love that he had for his father and became filled with compassion and pardoned the sentence of the son.
This tale is a description of these awesome days of judgment when we recite the special established prayers, complimented with the traditional hallowed tunes, and when we sound the awe inspiring Shofar. Practically everything that we do in these awesome days has been passed down to us by our sacred and righteous ancestors.
We may view ourselves as unworthy to stand in G-dís awesome judgment on our own merit. However, when we imitate and duplicate the words, tunes and sounds of the wailing call of the Shofar as our righteous forefathers did from time immemorial, G-d in His infinite kindness and compassion will recall our ancestorsí devotion, and our recitation, singing and sounding, will stand to protect us on the Day of Judgment.
What is it about the Shofar sounds that work so effectively to turn G-dís judgment into compassion and mercy?
The Talmud relates that since the time we have been exiled from our Temple in Jerusalem, the most potent vehicle to reach heaven is tears.
When an infant is crying, it makes us uneasy, it stirs our compassion and we try to do our best to pacify and calm the baby. Although the infant didnít communicate anything, by crying or shrieking, we immediately tend lovingly to its needs.
Similarly, G-d in His infinite compassion for us, knowing that not everyone can be stirred to tears, commanded us to sound the Shofar on Rosh Hashana, whose wailing sounds represent the cries of our recessed feelings. These potent crying sounds boost our prayers to penetrate the Heavens, transforming G-dís exacting Judgment into compassion, consideration and kindness.
I think after going through a tumultuous and turbulent year, with economic insecurity and uncertainty, global unrest, and Israelís security challenges, we have an additional measure of humility, urgency, hope and aspirations as Rosh Hashana approaches.
During President Obamaís visit to New York last week, he attended a private intimate fundraising dinner, where each attendee paid $35,000 for an audience with the president.
I ask you, what does it take from us to gain an audience with the King of Kings?
All it takes is our recognition that He is the Almighty and that everything is in His Power; life, health, death, peace and sustenance. To Him we pray and obey.
However, during the days from Rosh Hashana until Yom Kippur, the Heavenly Gates are wide open. G-d eagerly awaits us to recognize, call out and to draw close, and in response may we be inscribed in the Book of Life that is filled with blessings, peace, success, good health, contentment and redemption.
With our best wishes for a
happy, healthy and blessed New Year,
Rabbi Dovid and Malki Saks and family