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Running on Jewish Time

Friday, December 30, 2005

In Praise of My Teachers

Too many people have told me lately about those who write the word 'Rabbi' in front of their name who don't deserve the title...

So this is praise of my rabbis, none of whom do or will ever bear that title, but are truly my teachers.

In praise of my teacher...

She can take a single pasuk, and turn it, the light of comprehension winking through each facet at you, and delight in it, while frying shnitzel at 2 A.M. on a Thursday night.

She learns and lives what she learns. Reading Yeshaya sing of the Shechina embracing B'nei Yisrael as she bounces her own two year old on her knees.

A intellectual woman with no time to learn, learns her own life, kashas on her actions, proofs from their consequences, carrying continual conversation with G-d on the nature of existence as she tries to understand her own. There is no distance between that which she thinks and that which she is.

and with all this still has time to talk with a homesick eighteen year old who hangs out on her couch into the late hours of the night.

In praise of my teacher....

She watches and observes, gently shaping the world around them, cultivating little minds, balancing a entire class, effortlessly, dancing through the demands.

So practical, so pragmatic. The steady keel is the middle of a thousand dramas. So very normal.

The greatest plate spinner of them all, a dozen in the air, touching one here, tapping another there, steadying, maintaining and admist all the activity and noise, is the steady busy silence of human beings growing.

In praise of my teacher...

She is quiet and thoughtful. She focuses on a single person at a time, more than that is too distracting. She watches their face, their posture, their words. She hears volumes in their silences.

She thinks before she speaks, and often smiles and stays silent and lets other storm and rage as she queitly fixs the those very things.

She is over 50 years old and still willing to go back to second grade to learn hebrew properly.

In praise of my teachers....

all of these women have hard lives, but would be surprised to hear that they do.
all of these women have accomplished so much, but all have so much more they want to do.
all of these women live the Torah they've learnt without pretension or great demonstration.

These are women who love chesed, do justice and walk humbly with Hashem their G-d.

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