A plague raged in Rabbi Akiva’s house
Disrespect was the match
that lit the communal fire.
that extinguished people’s lives.
Leaving only the ashes of misplaced good intentions.
A whole house in ruin.
How do we live after we caused the fire?
How do we repair in the face of looming nothing?
How do we begin after we end?
Let us clean out our lot.
Keep only chesed
Tear down our fences
Keep the wood for a new fire.
The kind that enkindles souls.
That raises good deeds and each one of us toward heaven.
Baruch ata Adonai, ohev amo Yisrael. Amen.
Praise to You, Adonai, who loves Your People Lit. ''the one who struggles with God.'' Israel means many things. It is first used with reference to Jacob, whose name is changed to Israel (Genesis 32:29), the one who struggles with God. Jacob's children, the Jewish people, become B'nai Israel, the children of Israel. The name also refers to the land of Israel and the State of Israel. and who makes possible our love for each other.