Today is the last of our week of reflections for Interfaith Harmony Week. This week of reflections is dedicated in remembrance of the love and wisdom shared with us by Rev. Andrea J. Goodman, Co-founder and President of The Interfaith Peace Project.
World Interfaith Harmony Week is an annual event observed during the first week of February. The General Assembly of the United Nations designated this week to point out that mutual understanding and interreligious dialogue constitute important dimensions of a culture of peace. The General Assembly established World Interfaith Harmony Week as a way to promote harmony between all people regardless of their faith.
REV. ANDREA J. GOODMAN
August 30, 1950 – December 31, 2021
Cofounder and President of
The Interfaith Peace Project
May her memory be for a blessing!
THE JEWISH TRADITION
Interfaith Harmony Week
February 5, 2022
There is one whose soul expands until it extends beyond the border of Israel singing the song of humanity. In the glory of the entire human race in the glory of the human form his/her spirit spreads, aspiring to the goal of humankind, envisioning its consummation…. Then there is one who expands even further until he/she unites with all existence, with all creatures, with all worlds, singing a song with them all. There is one who ascends with all these songs in unison—the song of the soul, the song of the nation, the song of humanity, the song of the cosmos—resounding together, blending in harmony, circulating the sap of life, the sound of holy joy.
Rabbi Abraham Kook
Andrea was ultimately not afraid to be herself
Today I realize the wondrous symphony concerning the origins of myself. As one faith tradition so beautifully teaches, everyone is born from the heart of love pulsating from the depths of the Universe. Everything had to be exactly where it was for the mystery of myself to be born.
I am not a fleeting nano second in the history of all this. I am a beautiful manifestation of the Universe in the here and now of life.
Today I will deliberately practice being beautiful. I might dance down the street. Sing out at the top of my lungs. Dive deep into pools of friendship and love. I will not be afraid of who and how I love. I will not reject the gift of me attempting to imitate someone else. I will practice self-acceptance so I might generously give myself to everyone I meet.
I will stop whenever I can to introduce myself to others so they might meet the gift of me and I might meet the gift of them. I will realize how much we need one another as we walk along the pathways of life.
Today I pledge myself anew to practice the sacred art of self-acceptance. I will spend time sometimes alone with myself so I may discover the splendor of the Universe in the temple of my Body. I shall honor my flesh, respect my soul, and rejoice in my heart.
Never again will I be afraid to be myself. May I never deny the gift of myself to another. May I never deny the gift of others in my life.
You formed my inmost being;
you knit me in my mother’s womb.
I praise you because I am wonderfully made;
wonderful are your works!
My very self you know.
My bones are not hidden from you,
When I was made in secret,
fashioned from the depths of the earth.
Your eyes saw me unformed;
in your book all are written down
my days were shaped, before one came to be.
Verses from Psalm 139
The Jewish Tradition