ED: The following is a excerpt from the story, “Rabbis Share Sneak Previews of Holy Days Messages” which ran in our Rosh Hashanah Sept. 7 issue.
Rabbi David Woznica
Rabbi Isaiah Zeldin Rabbinic Chair
Stephen Wise Temple
I look forward to speaking about the importance of wonder and sharing how Judaism can foster a greater sense of wonder and awe. I chose this topic because I believe experiencing life through a prism of wonder can bring a greater sense of God, gratitude, happiness, humility, excitement and equanimity. Rabbi Abraham Joshua Heschel wrote: “The beginning of our happiness lies in the understanding that life without wonder is not worth living. What we lack is not a will to believe but a will to wonder.”
My general approach to sermons on Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur is to offer thoughts in keeping with the themes of the High Holy Days (such as teshuvah, introspection, new beginnings). It is my hope that congregants will leave with a greater love of Judaism, feeling inspired to be better people, and having learned clear ideas that they can apply to their daily lives.