The month of Elul has just entered our gates, Elul in Hebrew is an acronym for:
“I am for my beloved and my beloved is for me” (Song of Songs)
The month of Elul presents us with a wakeup call for the Days of Awe, days that evoke in us a gentle movement of inner and spiritual work, that invite us to look at ourselves and our actions, to make a mental account of the past year, and set goals for the new year.
These are days of introspection and looking inward.
י’ According to the Book of Creation, the letter in the alphabet that symbolizes the month of Elul is the letter Yod. It is the smallest letter in the alphabet. The smallest point in the touch of the pen on the paper, the beginning of all the letters. A start with potential. And the month of Elul calls us to return to our initial potential point, to our YUD, and to renew ourselves (Hagigah/Ohad Ezrahi).
In this week’s Torah Shoftim, Moshe says to the people:
When you enter the Holy Land, …and you say, I shall appoint a King, like all the nations… choose a King to rule you, which the Lord your God will select. (Deuteronomy, 16).
That king is supposed to meet very high standards of modesty, integrity, loyalty to the laws of morality and Torah and a promise not to return the people to the ways of bondage:
Do not amass material goods (e.g. herds of horses), and never return to Egypt… and do not seek to amass gold and silver… and for your entire lifetime, never be arrogant and feel superior to your fellow human beings… (Deuteronomy, 16: 14-18)
This king can be seen as a metaphor for that part within me that I permit to lead me in my choices and actions.
And the land can be seen as a metaphor for a stage in life in which I have reached a high awareness, for integration with all of my parts.
Perhaps we should ask ourselves: Who is the king I want to rule over me?
Maybe it’s my highest self that directs my life for the better?
And maybe it’s that little point of YUD inside me, the Divine spark inside me that rules over all the other parts of me, that connects us all to each other and to the source of everything?
The intimate connection to the mystery of creation, which acts from my center with authenticity — without feeding the ego?
The month of Elul is a month that invites us to ask such questions about our past lives — and start preparing for our reset in our new ones.