Wednesday, December 24, 2008


Three is not enough! However sturdy the three legs of a tripod, to guarantee groundedness, you need four.
We arrive at the feminine dimension of divinity, the four Matriarchs, Sarah, Rebecca, Rachel and Leah. Midpoint in the process of en-lighten-ment, perhaps we find our spirits lagging. The tripod starts to tip, the flame flickers in the passing wind of a cold wintry night. Will the fire founder, flit away, leaving behind a dying ember?
Mothers and sisters restoke the fires, breathing life into smoldering ash as they caress and nurse and nurture. The bearing of arms is no match for the power of a woman’s breast. Weapons of iron and steel melt before the wonder of the womb.
Maccabbees we praise , and so we should. Have we forgotten the Judiths who transcend the gentle trace of a woman’s touch to breathlessly behead the drunken enemy of Israel ; the Hannahs of history , whose sons surrender to the altar of sanctification, so that the Divine name never be extinguished from the imagination and hope of the human heart ?
We add women to our Menorah, ascending on the ladder of the holy, those concealed from view behind the flaps of desert tents, awake and attuned to the nuance of every surprise, however serendipitous, never failing to fill in waterless wells with the tears of deference and defiance.
And so we cradle in our hearts the memory of matriarchs, gratefully, lovingly.
As we kindle the fourth light, taking strength from the miracle of the feminine side of all of existence, we continue to witness the luminescence of the days ahead.

Happy Hannukah.

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