Friday, 22 September, 2023 - 9:57 am

It’s easy to make declarations.

With a Facebook account or a tweet, you can declare your positions, what you ate for breakfast, or any type of provocative statements. Some will garner a reaction, and others will be ignored.

I assume that people that make declarations – be they in person or virtually – are looking to elicit a response, whether verbal or not. Without any response, my efforts seem not to matter.

In this week’s parsha Haazinu, we are taught to “Proclaim the Name of G-d.” The Sages teach, based on this verse, that whenever the explicit Name of G-d was pronounced in the Temple, whoever heard it responded with the phrase, “May the Name of the glory of His kingdom be blessed forever and ever.”

Obviously, G-d is not in need of an ego boost.

So, why do we need to respond to the declaration with another declaration?

Rather, it is we that are in need of this declaration. By responding and affirming Hashem’s presence in our lives, we affirm that it is not our ego-driven and attention seeking selves that are at the core of our existence. We may at times deviate, but our essence is pure and shouts out the truth.

This Shabbat is referred to as Shabbat Teshuva (or Shuva), symbolizing a return. It is not only a return to G-d. It is also a return to our inner being.

As we straddle Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur, let us align with our true selves.

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