Wednesday, August 29, 2012

On Judaism, Change, and Reconstitution.

I think one of the reasons why I’m feeling so many things so intensely right now—especially with regards to my gender—is the time of year and what it means to me. This month, on the Jewish calender, is Elul. It’s the last month of the Jewish year, during which time we ask for forgiveness from those we’ve hurt (including ourselves, I think). In Judaism, this process of of repenting is called t’shuvah—which means “return” or “turn around.”

 But what happens when you’re going in circles? Where do you turn, and how? Perhaps  moments of clarity come in a flash of an instant. But I find that most of mine comes in a nagging whisper that I try to ignore for the sake of my convenience, fear, and emotional/physical exhaustion. I’ve been feeling a lot of things for a long time—things I don’t really know how to process. Things that feel way too big for me to piece apart. Add that to the fact that I get completely flustered when I feel like I’m comprehending something completely (but really, who completely understands something as complex as gender[s]?).

 There’s a profound pain in making t’shuvah—if it’s sincere, anyway. One has to accept their own inability to be everything they wish they could be (or at least maintain) To keep every promise they wish they could. The promise to be uncompromisingly true to oneself; to never ingest silence when things need to be spoken, expressed, made known.  It’s the moment of twilight when you see/feel two or distinct realities: The one you live now, which has outlived its purpose and is starting to feel tight around and within you, and the new one(s) in other directions, full of excitement and fear and unknowable things. At the end of things, the only thing to which you’re returning is the maelstrom of boundless chance. To the fundamentals of what makes you: you—the swarms of stardust churning, sifting, and shifting—all to give birth to a new and glorious creature. 

It’s not just the shedding of skin. No. It’s something much deeper. Something much, much more profound. You know it only when language and metaphor can no longer hold it in its tendrils. 

 So, here I am. On the precipice of that change. Looking down into the glittering darkness of be-coming—with all my fear and exhaustion. Waiting to fall into oblivion.


Lucas Noach said...

sweet post Tali, and PERFECT for Elul. May your inner and outer turnings satisfy and fulfill this new and eternal transformation. Baruch haShem.

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