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Hope and Other Things With Feathers
My Point of View, May, 2012
© Rabbi Jack Moline

Emily Dickinson wrote that "hope is the thing with feathers." Woody Allen wrote a book entitled Without Feathers. Whether you are with or without feathers, I ask you to write about hope.

I expect to discuss the subject during the upcoming High Holy Days, and I invite you to share your stories, ideas, poems, and other creative efforts for our annual reflections booklet. Thanks to Emil Regelman, we have a crisp new look, and thanks to the members of the congregation, we have a legacy of heartfelt and stimulating contributions.

As always, I ask that you edit yourself. 250 words is the preferred maximum; I know how much harder it is to write short than to write long. (You should see the original length of my sermons!) Please submit your writings in a Microsoft Word attachment if at all possible. Please send it to the "Hope and Other Reflections" address: hopeandotherreflections@gmaiLcom. This is an account dedicated to receive your submissions. No submission will be accepted without identifying the author. However, the author may request that the submission be published anonymously. (If you prefer, send a hard copy to me at the synagogue; same rules apply.)

Of course, we will accept any original effort you feel moved to create. But the notion of hope turns up so frequently in our lives that I suspect many of you have given it some thought. In our daily prayers, it is the framing word of the second paragraph of "Aleinu." In our commitment to Israel, it is the name of the national anthem. "Hope" has been the subject of national political debates, family conversations and dreams about children. Whether you are a football, baseball, basketball or soccer fan. it springs eternal, no matter how many times it is frustrated. Hope in things unseen, reasonable or not, motivates us in much of our lives.

The deadline for submissions is August 21. Submissions received after that date may not make it into the booklet- but you can hope! You will receive an acknowledgment of receipt on or about August 22, but please note that the email above is for correspondence- no question sent to the address will be answered.

I always look forward to the writing of our congregants. It is heartfelt and genuine, and it offers a window into the lives of friends and acquaintances that serves to deepen our connections among our congregational family. So please fire up your computer, grab a ballpoint or take one of those feathers and shape it into a quill. I look forward to your offerings!

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