No matter what your relationship to the Yamim Noraim, these high and holy days, everyone feels the power of the Shofar. The Shofar with its many rites and rules and meanings, touches our hearts and souls. As we know, there are four blasts of the Shofar. There are also 3 categories for these clarion calls.
There have been many commentaries on the 3 categories. As we are entering into these Awesome days, I would like to add my own.
We begin with Zichronot, with memories. We each have memories that drag us down and memories that elevate us. When I look back over the past year, I am weighed down by opportunities missed, time wasted, calls not returned, words that hurt instead of helped. These memories weigh me down. Sometimes, as I try to sleep these missteps, missed marks, mistakes keep me up. When I least expect it, on a hike, while reading or praying, my hard drive spews out memories of the past year that weigh me down. How can I raise myself up again? I need something to buoy me up. And I know that I cannot do it by myself. I need help. I need to be in council.
That is Malchuyot. Not only does it mean kingship but also council. G is “Melech HaOlam”, our Eternal Council. Malchuyot calls us to council. In council I find comfort. In council I find healing. The Shofar blasts remind me that I have a standing appointment with Melech HaOlam, my Eternal Council. I merely have to seek out that Eternal Council. Sometimes, while davening, traditional worship, I can direct my soul into my ‘councilling’ session. At other times, I have found myself in the right frame of mind, during a hike through the mountains or while reading something meaningful or listening to music and the door opens. I even find my council while creating a wonderful (well I like it) dinner for my family. In the ‘councilling’ session, I begin to find balance and more. I find cleansing.
Shofarot is so much more than the Rams horn that we blow. The root of the word contains the Remez meaning; Cleansing. What a blessing, what a promise. We remember, we seek council and in the end, our souls are cleansed and made whole again for the changes that are continually coming into our lives.