Place Yourself: An Unetaneh Tokef

PLACE YOURSELF in front of the fear.
You will be judged, you will die.
Place yourself in the center of the universe,
You earned that spot simply by existing.
Place yourself under obligation to God
However you understand or don’t understand God.
Place yourself on the path of holiness and joy and truth.
Bless and be blessed by HaMakom, the Place where we find ourselves.

Remember what you did wrong
Remember what you did right.
Remember those who came before you.
Remember that you are responsible for those who come after you.
Remember your history.
Remember Torah.
Bless and be blessed by Shaddai, remembering us.

Because the truly evil are already condemned,
The truly good are already blessed,
And then, there’s the rest of us.
It is said that on Rosh Hashanah God decides your fate: life or death.
And the ten days until Yom Kippur are your opportunity to change God’s mind.
So don’t blow it.
This is a powerful day, a fantastic opportunity!
Declare yourself for holiness and joy and truth.
Bless and be blessed by Shekhinah, listening.

And as a congregation, we proclaim:
Let the holiness rise up!
On Rosh Hashanah it is written
On Yom Kippur it is sealed.
And let us declare together:
We understand nothing.
All that is physical ends.
We die.
But not today.
Except sometimes, today.
We fret about the past and worry about the future
And forget to live with where we are now.
And then we die.
We understand nothing.
Teshuvah, tefilah, & tzedakah
Restore us to our place.
Teshuvah, when we return to our true selves;
Tefillah, when we stop time in holy conversation;
Tzedakah, when we transcend self;
And that’s when God decrees.
Bless and be blessed by Ruakh Ha-olam, breathing mindfulness.

Listen to the shofar as it announces:
Awesome and sacred is this sweet day!
The world is filled with the Divine, we are surrounded!
Hear us, know us.
Love us, enjoy us.
Remember us, rouse us.
Forgive us, inspire us,
Bless and be blessed by Elohim, the Creator, the Created, Creating.
We place ourselves in front of the fear,

On the path of holiness and joy and truth.

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