Moving from Av to Elul

As we move from the month of Av into the month of Elul, we transition from a period of mourning to one of promise for the future.

On Tisha B’Av we mourned over the past. We focused on our shortcomings and cried over our wasted potential. We recognized that we could have been better people, if only we had made better choices.

Now we are in a period of consolation. According to the commentator Rashi, the word for consolation in Hebrew is synonymous with reconsideration. That is – when we mourn, we feel a loss and perceive all of the potential that isn’t, because something is now gone. We become consoled for that loss when we reframe it. When we get a new perspective on what was, and we take the lessons from it into the future.

On Tisha B’Av, we felt bad for not living out our potential. Now, we must move forward. We cannot change the past, so we must learn to live it. We have to accept reality as it is. We can resolve to change and become better people in the future – but the first step is to say, “I’m OK.” I may not have made the best choices in the past; but those choices have brought me to this moment and I’m OK now. I can love myself as I am, and I can love the opportunity that life now presents. I can wake up in the morning and say, “It’s good to be alive.” I can learn from my past and resolve to be a better person tomorrow.

The month of Elul in Hebrew is an acronym for the saying, “I am for my beloved and my beloved is me.” Now is the time to remember that G-d loves us for who we are – so shouldn’t we love ourselves the same.

The month of Elul leads to Rosh Hashanah. On Rosh Hashanah, the judgment we receive is on our potential for the New Year. On Rosh Hashanah, it is decided who will be rich and who will be poor, who will be successful and who will fail, who will live and who will die. The judgment, and the potential it determines, all depends on the commitment we have to our future. Are you ready to change? Are you ready to be the best you that there is?

To start your process of self-evolution, ask yourself, who do you want to be in the coming year? What are your dreams, and what do you what to accomplish? Give yourself a mission statement, and think of two or three steps that you can take this month to become the true you. If you show G-d that commitment, if your show it to yourself, then you will be on your way to a future filled with blessing.

This entry was posted on Tuesday, August 30th, 2011 at 7:50 am and is filed under Uncategorized. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

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