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A Prayer for this Moment, Standing at the Mountain, by Rabbi Menachem Creditor (2021)

https://opensiddur.org/?p=37132 A Prayer for this Moment, Standing at the Mountain, by Rabbi Menachem Creditor (2021) 2021-05-16 14:44:45 A pre-Shavuot prayer in the shadow of the 2021 Israel–Palestine crisis. Text the Open Siddur Project Menachem Creditor Menachem Creditor https://opensiddur.org/copyright-policy/ Menachem Creditor https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0/ Conflicts over Sovereignty and Dispossession Progressive Zionism English vernacular prayer Har Sinai 2021 Israel–Palestine crisis
Contribute a translation Source (English)

Dear, Holy One,
You, who abide
in the highest heights
and the innermost depths,
pour the best of You through the best of us.

We cannot stand at Your holy mountain,
if we ignore the terrain.
We cannot be of service to Your world
if we fail to find our balance.

And so we turn to You, Maker of Peace,
because the tremors below
are causing wide fissures between us.

I look East and see my child in danger.
I look East and see my parents running for cover.
I look East and see my sister and brother and their babies,
taking shelter as sirens blaze and rockets explode,
and, in this moment, I cannot see anything else.

This makes Your mountain even smaller,
but not small enough that I can recognize
my cousins on the other side,
separated from me by painful histories.
The rockets blind me to all we’ve shared.
But there they are, vulnerable and scared,
the worst of humanity holding them hostage, too.

As we pray to receive Your wisdom this holy, revelatory night,
what do we truly pray for our cousins to receive?
Destruction? A mountain over their heads?
What we do not wish for ourselves,
we must never wish upon our neighbors.

Though we know that defending our children, our parents, our families,
is right in Your eyes, we do feel the terrible cost, pulsing in the earth itself,
causing great tectonic collisions, opening great rifts between Your children
on the different sides of the mountain.

And so, Source of Life, we will do our very best
to forge a path up the mountain,
to see past its rocky border
and remember You too dwell in our cousins’ eyes.

May we only do what we must to protect ourselves,
until that great day when swords and rockets, war itself
will forever be banished from the land.

May all Your images lie down in safety,
ready to wake and rebuild our shared and fractured world.

Amen.

“A Prayer for this Moment, Standing at the Mountain” by Rabbi Menachem Creditor was first published at the author’s blog on 16 May 2021, and shared through the Open Siddur Project via the project’s discussion group on Facebook.

 

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