December 18, 2018

Elul 1: Esther Netter

Esther Netter

When is the right moment to sit and contemplate the difficult times we encounter? Why don’t I just get in touch with those things that are painful to think about, very real, hard to stay focused on?   How do I set aside time for inner reflection, slowing down enough to notice those thoughts and feelings that cause discomfort and even agitation.

Elul is a time for thinking about the “whens” the “whys” and the “hows.” It is the new year that affords us this opportunity, even demands it of us. To move forward, to heal, to forgive, to grow so that we are the most and the best we can be for the new year.

A friend, gently encouraging me to ask the “whens, whys and hows”, shared a favorite quote from lyricist Leonard Cohen’s song Anthem:

Ring the bells that still can ring
Forget your perfect offering
There is a crack, a crack in everything
That’s how the light gets in.
That’s how the light gets in.
That’s how the light gets in.

When do we focus on the cracks? How do we heal those cracks in our lives and hearts? Why do we leave those cracks unattended only to grow and deepen? We all have cracks in our live. Take the time to recognize them and remember, it is through the cracks that the light shines through. May this month bring each of us more light and illumination.

Esther Netter is the executive director of the Zimmer Children’s Museum in Los Angeles.