The Holy One, who lights up the world and all of her inhabitants with mercy. And in Her goodness, each day, renews the act of creation.
Melody by Coleen Dieker and Josh Warshawsky
The universe began with a hum.
A hum… and then a bang. And each day it grew larger and larger and contained more and more. We cannot live each new day in the same way we lived the last, for we have all of the experiences and memories of the previous day filed away in our internal memory bank. And so each day is created anew, filled with new opportunities. And each day, we have the potential to become partners with God in the act of creation, adding to the world in a way that only you can.
These words have sat nestled beneath the “Barchu” in our siddurim for hundreds of years, waiting for their power to be unleashed and their message to be understood. This section of our Tefillah is all about creation, leading us into the other main themes of our central Tefillot: revelation and redemption. We begin with the creation of the whole world. How can we pray without first acknowledging the miraculousness of our own existence? Without mentioning the fact that we are even present at this moment to offer words of gratitude? And so the first thing we do is speak of mercy. “The Holy One, who lights up the world and all of her inhabitants with mercy.” The key here is light. The first act of creation, mentioned first, and inherently interwoven with the divine attribute of mercy. And then this: “And in the Divine’s goodness, every single day, She renews the act of creation.”
And in thinking about creation and rebirth, we were immediately drawn to the feminine. Hebrew is a gendered language, and most of the time in liturgy the masculine suffix is used for God. But here, praying for rebirth and renewal, we wanted to sing to The Divine in the feminine, and so we changed the suffixes to reflect that: Hame’irah, Uv’tuvah, Mechadeshet.
Now is the time for us to be partners with God again in creating a better world. May we continue to merit to be partners with the Holy One. Grant us the capacity to value our friends and family, and to enrich the lives of those whom we love.
Change happens every day. Sometimes it’s hard to see and hear, like a hum,
But if we all hum together, we can move mountains.