TIKKUN OLAM - Repair The World
I am honored to have acknowledged the nudge from the Holy Spirit to put this program together. The process has been phenomenal.
The significance of this service is amazing to me, especially as we have entered a season of nonviolence, this is Black History month and we are about to step into the Lent Season.
Repair The World, or as it is known in Hebrew “Tikkun Olam”, has been an intriguing concept to me for some time. Pretty much every sect of Judaism has the belief that together everyone can move forward on a sacred, holy and lifelong journey to help Repair the World through social action. Tikkun Olam has differing interpretations among its practitioners, however, for our purpose, we will be focusing on the compassionate side of Tikkun Olam by spreading acts of kindness.
From Learning To Give Website:
A Jewish concept defined by acts of kindness performed to perfect or repair the world. The phrase is found in the Mishnah, a body of classical rabbinic teachings. It is often used when discussing issues of social policy, insuring a safeguard to those who may be at a disadvantage. In modern Jewish circles, Tikkun Olam has become synonymous with the notion of social action and the pursuit of social justice.
A loved one of mine, Sherri Pitman, once came up to me and said: “What are you bucking for Sainthood?” No, definitely not, but I do want to leave the world a better place for my being here. Hearing people say to me “You’re genuine” “You have integrity” or “You have so much love after all you have been through” brings me such joy because I know God is working through me.
My focus has been for many years now to be a person that continuously looks for an opportunity to perform the mitzvot. While the literal translation of mitzvot is a command, I prefer the translation of being a connection to God by doing a good or praiseworthy deed for another human being.
We can change the world if we choose to. How? By being present in the moment and following through when opportunities arise. Many years ago when I was in my wheelchair, I was sitting outside weaving one of my peace baskets and basking in the warm rays of the sun. My focus and meditation is always to send vibes of peace while performing the action of making the baskets. I was always "weaving" peace. A man in his mid-thirties was walking really fast past me, huffing, he looked angry. You could just feel that he was having a terrible day. I stomped my foot and said “Hey” he stopped, and with a bitter tone said “What?” I then pointed up at the sun and said: “Look that beautiful sun is shining!” He paused and slowly his angry face melted into a sense of peace and calm. Then he walked at a leisurely pace away from me. I thought it was done. Several minutes went by, when I heard a car horn, I looked up and saw a car driving away with an arm extended out the driver's side window pointing up at the sun. So yes, we can change the world by reaching out to one person at a time.
That man could have chosen to not accept my love that day. The issue isn’t to focus on what someone might do with your expression of peace, the focus is and always should be to practice peace. If it doesn’t affect an individual directly, it very well could transfer to someone else, that might have an impact on the very person who originally shunned your kindness.
He has told you, O man, what is good, And what the Lord requires of you: Only to do Justice, and to love goodness, and to walk modestly with your God; Then will your name achieve wisdom. Tenakh Micah 6:8-9 The Jewish Bible.
This is the foundation of a basic truth we need to perform acts of justice, and mercy in order to walk the walk. To minister, and in some cases give aid, to the poor, the orphaned, the widow, and homeless people. This my friends is connecting with God! as we journey to Repair the World.
My walk is a very intense desire that whenever I encounter anyone on this planet I am looking at the face of God. Therefore I do my best to achieve a higher awareness for others around me. It is not easy. In fact it is a difficult thing to balance at times and once in a while, I fail miserably at this endeavor. When I do fail, I don’t sit and wallow in that failure, I look at the situation and do my best to find a moment of clarity that leads to personal growth.
Our main objective should always be a doctrine that follows what Cephas (also known as Peter) said to Paul in the book of Galatians Chapter 2, Verse 10 and that is to be mindful of the poor. Indeed throughout the Jewish and the Christian Bibles, we are admonished to perform acts of social justice, to give clothing and housing to those less fortunate, to feed the hungry and to lift up the orphans and the widows. I would add that if we updated our sacred texts today. We must do our best to overcome situations that involve incidents of violence, racism, sexism and various phobias or hate crimes toward the LGBT and other communities that are discriminated against.
Before me, you see several apples, all different colors and varieties. Now watch what happens when I cut them open. These apples are similar but different on the outside, but on the inside, they are very close to the same color. As human beings we are all different from one another on the outside, however, we absolutely must recognize that on the inside, even though we are all dealing with our own issues, we are all God’s children on a journey.
As such we need to have compassion for those less fortunate than ourselves, including the stranger in a strange land. The sacred texts say we should also treat them with kindness because we ourselves suffered in our own bondage in Egypt. A metaphor for our own trials and tribulations in our past.
Our best intention should always be driven by a desire to do no harm in all things, be it our spiritual or religious walk, our face to face dealings with others, and in today’s world, how we interact with others on electronic forums and social media. We should celebrate diversity, as long as it does no harm, shun those that would perpetuate violence and hatred on any human being, no matter if the perpetrators are young, or old, male, or female, white, brown, or black. We must do our best to become the peace in a world that is currently so rampant with chaos. Indeed if we do this as individuals, we truly can Repair The World.
Some of my personal mantras are:
“Peace be still”, “Tikkun Olam, Repair The World”, "7x77" for forgiveness.
Sometimes I use the phrase “Namaste” which is Sanskrit for The Divine in me, recognizes the Divine in you. Tonight I recognize The Divine in you, I look on your beautiful faces and I see the face of God.
Be well, may God bless you, keep you and always shine the light upon you.
Tenakh - The Jewish Bible
The New JPS Translation
January 25, 2020 By AJ White-Wolf
Updated February 4, 2020 By AJ White-Wolf
Updated and revised February 11, 2020 By AJ White-Wolf