Tuesday, July 13, 2010


I have always had trouble with davening. I never felt that I was talking with our father in heaven or that my prayers were answered. I never felt that I was standing before the king of the universe because really, who am I that the king should summon me to stand before him. So why, you may ask do I daven three times a day? It is because I believe that there is a supreme intelligence, a force in the universe that chose the progeny of  Abraham, Isaac and Jacob as his emissaries in this world to proclaim his presence and do his will.I have no choice, my soul was at the foot of Sinai and the mountain was suspended above us. There we pledged to obey his commandments and that oath obligates us for all time. I daven because I am commanded to daven, not only because I fear punishment but because I am in awe of something that I can never hope to understand.

The Rambam explains that love of G-d can be compared to the love of a man who is obsessed with a women. She is constantly in his thoughts, he will do anything she asks, he would gladly sacrifice all his worldly goods and even his life for her. But how can a human being express love for that which is not human? Our consciousness fills our being, how can we relate to something that is beyond that consciousness?

The only answer is that we must evacuate that consciousness and seek within that spark of the divine that was part of our souls at Sinai.However if the answer is within us perhaps we are not worshiping Hashem but worshiping ourselves? But then again Hashem created Man in his image and .breathed in him the breath of life. He is part of us. If we remember that then davening can become more than a ritual. It can be an attempt at connecting to that which is within us and thereby begin to approach the One who was is and forever will be the master of the universe.

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