Saturday, September 23, 2006

Says it all... I think, Therefore I am... I think...

This in from a dear friend in California:


The prayer-poem U'netanneh Tokef, figuring prominently in the Musaf
service of the High Holidays, is traditionally attributed to Rabbi Amnon of mayenee, a legendary martyr at the time of the Crusades (12th century). Since, however, this prayer was among the finds in teh Cairo Genizah, it must have been composed at an earlier date. According to some, it was published by Rabbi Kalonymus ben Meshullam, head of the Jewish community of Mainz and one of the most eminent liturgical poets of 11th century Germany.

The poem depicts Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur as the days of heavenly judgment, when it is decreed "how many shall pass away and how many shall be brought into existence; who shall live and who shall die; who shall come to a timely end, and who to an untimely end; who shall perish by fire and who by water; who by sword and who by beast; who by hunger and who by thirst; who by earthquake and who by plague; who by strangling and who by stoning; who shall be at ease and who shall wander about; who shall be at peace and who shall be molested; who shall have comfort and who shall be tormented; who shall become poor and who shall become rich; who shall be lowered and who shall be raised. But repentance, prayer and charity cancel the stern decree."

The U'netanneh Tokef meditation mentions also G-d's consideration of human weakness and his benevolence

More:

It seems to cover all the bases.

There is an argument about to call God G-D or God. Whatever.

Ben





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