Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Wrapped in the Tallit of Tikkun Olam

Tikkun olam loosely translates to "repairing the world." Today, during Rosh Hashanah services, I experienced a profound sense of tikkun olam as our rabbi recited his sermon.

Rabbi Martin Lawson of San Diego's Temple Emanu-El is an extraordinary human being. Three years ago I had the pleasure of being part of one of his trips to Israel. Seeing Israel for the first time with someone like Rabbi Lawson makes it impossible not to fall in love with our feisty little Jewish homeland. I can't wait to go back.

But this sermon had nothing to do with Israel or even Judaism. It was about basic human rights. Rabbi Lawson spoke passionately about how Proposition 8 - the ballot measure that, if passed, will amend California's constitution to take away the rights of same-sex couples to legally marry - is a discriminatory measure borne of fear and ignorance.

He pointed out, with thunder in his voice, the importance of equal rights for all people - regardless of sexual orientation.

Temple Emanu-El has maybe a handful of GLBT members, but we're well represented. Our board president is a gay man, and three board members are lesbians. Still, I never expected this issue to be the topic of a Rosh Hashanah sermon.

Needless to say, I was in tears for most of the 30-minute talk.

And when I taste the apples dipped in honey at Rosh Hashanah dinner tonight, I'll savor the added sweetness of tikkun olam.


Epicure68 said...

That's beautiful. How nice to see a religious person not go wiggy over sexuality for a change.

Lady-Light said...

Darn. And here I thought you were writing about being wrapped in a tallit of my blog, Tikkun Olam.
(gmar chatimah tovah!)