Thursday, April 19, 2012

Musings on the Omer  days 8-14  The week of G’vurah, Contraction.

Week 2; Days 8-14 invitation to reflect on the attribute of G’vurah; discipline, filter, membrane, contraction, limiting.
Discipline and boundaries’ purpose is to support life and love.   Boundaries are a necessary part of life.   Hesed; expansion and grace flow freely like water.  Water needs to be focused, filtered or contained to be  used.   Without G’vurah water has no form and cannot be used.
Time was very G’vuradik - restricted this week.  

8. Hesed Sh’b’G’vurah Expansion/Grace within Contraction
Consider  - Is my discipline gracious and expansive?
Image – blood  (Hesed) in an artery (G’vurah); A baby (Hesed) moving through the birth canal (G’vurah) to start life.
Guide for practice - ask: Do the discipline and boundaries I establish for others support growth and nourishment?  Or Is it demoralizing and destructive?  What about discipline I take on myself?  Is it useful and helpful?  Do the boundaries need to shift to better nourish others and myself? 

9. G’vurah Sh’b’Gvurah  Discipline within Discipline
Ask – Is my discipline disciplined?  Is it directed by moods swings or something external?  Is it severe?  Or does it serve to nourish and help. 

10. Tiferet Sh’b’Gvurah  Compassion/Harmony in Discipline
Image – 1) A heart with veins moving blood to it and arteries moving the oxygenated blood back through the body.  2) A breast feeding an infant. 
Compassion gives the receiver what they can receive and what will nourish.  Compassion receives what is given.  Compassion is the tuning between a giver and receiver.
Is my discipline compassionate?  Is it given in a way that can be received?  Is it too strict?  Too lenient?  

11.Netzah  Sh’b’G’vurah  Perseverance, longevity, eternity within Discipline
Focus/Intensity within Discipline
Imagine a beating heart.  Is the rate consistent?  Or are there random beats from time to time?  The heart need beat at consistent rate to support vitality, health and productivity.
Discipline must have the quality of perseverance to have impact.  Will it pass the test of time?  Or does it change frequently and allow benefits to deteriorate before they can help?    
Consider 1) Prayer practice or meditation practice 2) Exercise  

12. Hod Sh’b’Gvurah Fluidity/Humility in Discipline
Image - Imagine dry desert land.  See the tiny flowers that spring up even in the most harsh environment.  
Is my discipline fluid?  Am I willing to change my position when presented with new information in the moment?   Am I open to enhancing a practice when opportunity presents itself?

13. Yesod Sh’b’Gvurah  Bonding in discipline  Friday April 20th 2012
Discipline must lead to developing deeper bonds to be useful and productive.
Image – an old tree, its trunk and abundant roots twisting deeply and embedded in the Earth.
Does discipline lead to deepening bonds? Are people left alienated as a result?   discipline need support bonding. 

14. Malkhut Sh’b’GVurah  Shabbes  April 21rst
Discipline, like love, must enhance personal dignity, the sovereign self. Discipline that breaks a person will degrade dignity.
Does my discipline allow the recipient to  keep his or her own integrity and sense of self?  Does if increase self-esteem and self-awareness or does it weaken and dishearten me and others?

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