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"It is Never Too Late"

Posted on October 4, 2015 at 11:50 AM Comments comments (158)
I found this poem most inspirational  and hope that you will too.

It Is Never Too Late

The last word has not been spoken,
the last sentence has not been written,
the final verdict is not in.

It is never too late
to change my mind,
my direction,

To say no to the past and yes to the future,
to offer remorse,
and to ask and give forgiveness.

It is never too late
to start over again,
to feel again
to love again
to hope again.

It is never too late
to overcome despair,
to turn sorrow into resolve,
to pain into purpose.

It is never too late to alter my world,
not by magic incantations
or manipulating the cards
or deciphering the stars.

But by opening myself
to curative forces buried within,
to hidden energies,
the powers in my interior self.

In sickness and in dying, it is never too late.
Living, I teach,
Dying, I teach,
how I face pain and fear,

Others observe me, children, adults,
students of life and death,
Learn from my bearing, my posture,
my philosophy.

by: Harold Schulweis

Meditation on a new year

Posted on September 28, 2014 at 6:13 PM Comments comments (2508)
I was recently asked to speak to the members of a Retirement Residence about the Jewish New Year. I began by asking them to think back over their long lives and imagine the most eventful New Year they had ever spent. I asked them to try to recall what they were wearing, who they were with, if they were at a party or a dance and  of the fun they were having. Had they had a bit too much to drink? How had they felt the next morning?

After  a few minutes of considering my words, I told them that the Jewish New Year is the opposite of those memories.  This time of year is meant as a review; an opportunity to reflect, to repair and to return. We are asked to reflect on the year just past and question whether we did everything in our power to live up to our potential, to be honest and kind to others, if we had nurtured our physical and mental health and showed love and patience in our relationships. If we found areas in our relationships that needed work, had we made the effort to acknowledge them, ask for forgiveness and try to rectify the hurt we had caused? And finally, had we prepared ourselves spiritually to "return" to the path that would allow our humanity to flourish?

Every person takes stock at some point in their life, often though it is at the end and with regret. Perhaps knowing how fickle most people are, the Jewish people are required to do this reckoning each year and to enter into a new year with a clean slate and with a hopeful heart.

It is an opportunity to meditate on the kind of person one hopes to be, as a role model, as a mentor, as a parent or as a friend. It offers the message that it is never too late to change for the better.

Whether one is Jewish or not, this is a custom that can be transformative for anyone. I invite you to adopt it. Let me know how you get on.

 Shana Tova U'Metukah (a Sweet New year).