Thanksgiving Greetings

I am quite certain Reb Zalman (a’h) would like me to share something that he would share without fail at this time every year, asking me to get the word out:

Thanksgiving, a time for gratitude, is a time for giving thanks! After we partake in our Thanksgiving celebration, let’s take a moment for birkat hamazon / grace after meals, (however that comes up for you and your company in your particular ways of “Jew”-ing), and to reflect on those things for which you are thankful this year, including the meal.

Here are links for two Thanksgiving resources provided by Reb Zalman (a’h) for download or printing:

Thanksgiving insert 1

Thanksgiving insert 2

Reb Zalman’s innovative inserts teach us a core teaching of Jewish Renewal that for all times, we have been empowered to make the tradition our own. The chachamim / the sages of yore and the Men of the Great Assembly who helped codify our liturgy as it has come down to us even in this time would agree!

Each year, when I have put these out, several individuals of our communities are reminding us of the holiday’s taint from imperialistic treatment and decimation of native peoples by Western conquerors. For this sentiment at this time, please consider Reb Zalman’s moving Tahanun prayer (click here). Reb Zalman’s heart did not ignore these concerns, and I know that some were angered over these prayers. Yaasher Koach to all us hevra whose deep caring for the downtrodden and for the righting of injustice wherever it may be takes hold of us so that we are moved to action! May our efforts bear fruit in all the worlds.

Here’s a geruss / greeting to the entire community and students of Reb Zalman, (z’tzvkl), everywhere. Blessings for a happy Thanksgiving.

Gabbai Seth Fishman

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