Thursday, September 16, 2010

PREPENT5771 Day 38 9.16 Focus

High Holy Days Journey with Amichai Lau-Lavie: 40 ways in 40 days to find your focus

What’s left to examine on this last night before arrival?

Be cheerful. What an insane habit is this of groping always into the past months, and scraping together every little pitiful instance of awkwardness and misfortune, and keeping my nervous system ever on the rack. (Emerson)

I think Emerson’s right – this 40-day journey is somewhat insane, and now that it is almost over, that we’re almost there, I feel the weight of the travel, these past few weeks of daily probing the innards of who and what I am. Are we there yet?

Am I Here yet?

Is Here what happens all day on Yom Kippur or is that just another there?

It’s about being in focus. Like with a camera, being ready to be in the moment. Tonight is the focus prep final.

I know that this journey does not really end on Saturday night when the Shofar blows and the sun sets on these 40 days and the feast replaces the fast. The repenting/perfecting/reflecting of self has to go on if the changes I want and the more happiness I want are to ground and grow and become part of who I am. But in some ways, this is the artificial, ritualized way of marking progress. There is a deadline – a focal point. Tonight we prepare for trial, for full on focus - tomorrow night we rise to the occasion.

Tonight I pause to look back and reflect on the journey of finding my focus– the 38 days of thinking and thanking and lists and conversations and cleaning up and questions rising and a gradual ascent up the mountain of these high and holy hills. Day by day, what did I learn here? What is refined?

If you have been traveling with me, as so sweetly some of you share, I invite you to take this time tonight or tomorrow morning and look back at your journey as well.

There’s still time for phone calls and emails to deal with unfinished business of apologies and truth.

But mostly, if possible, find a minute to honor this journey and pause to reflect.

Have you found more of your focus? What more do you want to focus on?

Are you happier, from 1-10?

Are you more ready to be present, here, within, these coming days of atonement? This coming year?

We t/here yet?

Here is my list of 38 days:

High Holy Days Journey with Amichai Lau-Lavie: 40 ways in 40 days to find your focus

Day 1. Take a long look in mirror, full length: who I am now and who I want to become.

2. EAT better: look at my plate: pause to consider my eating habits

3. List #1: 3 things that I regularly or randomly do and regret?

4. Express Gratitude.

5. Make Your Own Sabbath. Slow down.

6. List #2: focus on ONE ITEM from your list of THREE things you want to change in your life. What are three steps you can take to help this ONE change happen?

7. FIX. Fix something today.

8. How can I make a difference in someone’s life today?

9. Fight your inner enemy: what stops you from change?

10. Start a daily 20 minutes physical work out routine. Report to somebody on it. Pass it on.

11. List #3: Blacklist: make a list of 5 people with whom some check in is required.

12. Deal with your blacklist. At least one name on the list – email, phone, resolution if possible.

13. Start going through address books for edits.

14. List #4: who’s spotting my back? Who’s there to help me with my blind spots when I need?

15. List #5: wish list: ten people you love in your life and wish to spend more time with this coming year:

16. Make wish list happen: concrete plans with a few from wish list – actual dates this fall. Carve time for play.

17. List#6: 5 things I am ashamed of in life.

18. Deal with debts

19. Consider your therapy – or any ongoing process of reflection you regularly engage in- what can be improved?

20. Play yard sale: get rid of stuff from closets and shelves. And hard-drive.

21. Review. Pause to look back. And plan ahead. What’s yet to be dealt with?

22 Lights out - sleep better

23 So sorry: Who do I need to apologize for?

And what do I need to apologize to myself fo

24 Send a Wish – shana tova cards to those you love

25 get something new for the new year (I got a tie)

26 pause – Sabbath time

27 listen - Take time to listen, quietly, for a few minutes, to silence.

28 find poetry

29 Clean Up (your act) house cleaning

30 Dip (something in honey)

31 Delete (bread and past into living water)

32 Tear Here – get a good cry going

33 Moment of Silence

34 volunteer

35 choose life

36 Deal with Steal – and respond better to crisis

37 Sing More

38 focus

Please feel free to share your thoughts and ideas as we move forward and, as always, you may find more information about our High Holy Day services by visiting,

No comments:

Post a Comment