Israel is 62 tonight, and I’m turning 41- Hebrew date. I was born just minutes into Independence Day thus named “Amichai” – “My Nation Lives” by super Zionist parents. Back home in Jerusalem tonight my mother’s serving a two tier chocolate cake with whipped cream and strawberries – one tier for Israel, and one for me. I celebrate both the Hebrew and the ‘regular’ birth-date – two birthdays, at best two cakes, and two occasions to pause and reflect – who am I this year? what’s different? what’s hot, or not? what needs some work?
There’s a link between Independence and inter-dependence – in my life and in Israel’s reality – and that’s my focus today.
I woke up this morning thinking about an email i’m waiting for, a reply to a gently vague gesture of an invitation for a conversation. There was no reply in my inbox and I got a whiff of my frown, disappointment, and caught my self in the act: STOP. Do NOT let this other person’s reaction dictate your happiness! Let your happiness and sense of worth be an independent entity – your joy depends on you. What others will react to, respond to, enjoy, love, write back and/or not – will only enhance, not replace. Self reliance, baby. happy birthday.
And the same for Israel, if I may, on this eve of my birth-nation’s complex 62nd birthday, celebrating Independence and torn about its reliance on the love, money, assertion and approval of the rest of the world. It’s no small miracle that there is Jewish Independence and a thriving nation, but is there also room for the questions, and for the will to fix, and improve?
Day 21 on the count of fixing and improving towards more wholesome in-dependence. Today is Malchut of Tiferent. Majesty within the heart. Self love. Sit on your throne. Wear your birthday crown. Raise your flag, pause to thank, and make a wish, then have your cake AND eat it.
three weeks down, four to go.