A time that signifies slavery to freedom and nation, this year it also falls into a secular New Year, which can be freeing or, slave encased also.
For all of us, this is a time where we can also think about freeing ourselves; from old and toxic habits, relationships that are negative, and self-destruction. We often as a society, focus so much on what others do to us or how we react to others, we fail to see how we treat ourselves and our responses to self-inflicted wounds.
How can Parashat Bo teach us to free ourselves?
Do we need to be as Moses and point our fingers at the moon and declare a new start, regardless of where the moon sits within the sky? Probably. Even the most free-spirited of us, is an animal of structure; we are creatures of habit. We tend to only embrace change when it is forced or, when it seems easily attainable. However, the goals can be to free ourselves: to understand that though structure guides us, be it tradition or the moon in the sky, we are in fact, free.
We need to understand that sometimes things can be painful.
It wasn’t easy for Jews to go from slaves to a nation; so we shouldn’t assume that change of any kind is going to be easy for us either – though, it will be well worth the dedication to the cause.
We had a new relationship with G_d, and now, when we make changes to our spirit, body and mind; we are essentially giving thanks and honoring that very relationship that others strived for and gained, not only for themselves but for us. When you make positive changes for yourself, you are also helping others- be it heirs, peers or society.
Freedom and relationships… that’s how I see Parashat Bo…
This week’s d’var was written by Michele Paiva, PunkTorah community member and author.