May 14, 2009

Mussar movement

While I was in the hospital, S explained to me part of the theory behind the Mussar movement as taught by Rabbi Ira Stone. In his recent visit to Seattle (when I was inpatient at Swedish), he taught three things one can do to develop a meaningful spiritual practice.
1) Bless God after every meal.
2) Say the Sh'ma
3) Celebrate Shabbat each week.
What I particularly appreciate about these three things is that they focus on the frequent (meals), the daily (Sh'ma) and the weekly (Shabbat). It's a way to bring meaning into everything one does in life, no matter how mundane. It turns the act of eating into holiness. That particularly resonated with me in light of my recent hospital stay and my new-found joy in sharing a meal with others.

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