Hosea 2:21-22
Binding ourselves to God in justice, goodness, mercy, faithfulness…

Binding ourselves to God in Hebrew
And I will betroth you to me forever:
I will betroth you to me with righteousness and justice
And with goodness and mercy,
And I will betroth you with faithfulness;
Then you shall know the LORD.

v’eiras’tikh li l’olam
v’eiras’tikh li l’olam
v’eiras’tikh li b’tzedek
uv’mish’pat uv’chesed uv’rachamim
v’eiras’tikh li be’emunah
v’yada’at et Adonai

Each morning about awakening we have the mitzvah and privilege to wrap the tefillin straps around our arms and to say these words as part of the blessings for laying tefillin. Judaism creates powerful rituals that take ethereal concepts and makes them concrete… how to we get close to God; how do we know God? We bind ourselves with leather straps every morning, and we recite words that evoke God’s character traits so that we too may be imbued with God’s character traits. When I first entered rabbinical school and was required to lay tefillin it felt strange, embarrassing, awkward, and uncomfortable. I thought I looked like a miner in an underground cave looking for the light. Now I never want to wake up and pray without tefillin. It is grounding, makes me feel physically connected to God, and the pressure points in the arms and head I believe clear the energy pathways.


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