Lois Fein


Dipping from the WELL: Some Thoughts on the NEW Month

Dear Friends,

I like to play with words. 

When I say "Thank you" and another person says "You're welcome" I think of the words as this: "[It's] your WELL, Come [enjoy]!" 

When I see the phrase Day of “Atonement” I think “at-ONE-ment.” 


When I see the word “holiday” I think it derives from “holy day” and when I see “holy day” I think it is missing a “W” in front of it and that it actually reads “Whole-y-day” – a day of experiencing wholeness. 


We are entering the new Jewish month of Heshvan.  Technically, there are no holy days or holidays in the month of Heshvan, but maybe we can make each day a Whole-y-day – a day of shalom – a day of wholeness.  Let’s bring back the “W”.


Mythologist Joseph Campbell talked about how he thinks that what people are looking for is “to experience the rapture of being alive.”  I agree, and, for me, wholeness is part of that.


I have been reading Jeff Bernhardt’s book For Every Season: An introspective guide to renewing ourselves during the High Holidays and throughout the Jewish Year published by Blackbird Books.


I am inspired by the questions Jeff encourages us to ask ourselves - not just during the Days of Awe, but throughout the year and especially during Rosh Chodesh as a communal and individual time for reflection.  I love these two questions:


“In what way do I feel a sense of wholeness? 


What has brought me to feel this way?”


For me, these two questions are a compass.  I hope you enjoy reflecting upon them as WELL.