Nothingness

“God’s Spirit moves through us and the world at a pace that can never be constricted by any one religious paradigm. I love that.” - Bono (Paul David Hewson)

Paul David Hewson, most commonly known by his stage name Bono, is an Irish singer and musician, best known for being the main vocalist of the Dublin-based rock band U2.

For those of you who know me, you know that one of my universal themes is the arrogance of clergy of all faiths suggesting that the God of their understanding is the one you should believe and follow the precepts of. I have been down that path for many years and all I have seen that create is a Shoah – Calamity of the human race.

My decision to become a Rabbi and Spiritual Counselor was directly connected to my disconnectedness and disillusionment from my years of being told who, what, when, where, and how I should be and what would happen to me if I wasn’t.

Dogma and doctrine have divided us for so long. I am not sure that clergy of any faith have the right to begin thinking that they know God as God intended for us to know God. I agree with Bono 100%. God moves in mysterious ways at a pace that I know I do not comprehend, but have total and abiding faith in. For me to suggest to you what and how you should believe and practice borders on infamy. Your relationship with God is personal and intimate and only you can choose what God will be in your life.

Regardless of your religion, rituals are there for your joyful experience as a way of enhancing your relationship with your God, but please remember at all times, that what, why, how, how often and how many are between you and your God, not your cleric. No man or woman has power of you unless you choose to give it to them. I may learn from mere mortals, but my faith is in a God who powers that no person has, ever had or will ever have.

My prayer for you today will be to affirm the God within you as we all journey through God’s loving and compassionate universe regardless of whether we sit, kneel, lie down or dance. We are all God’s children and God loves us all equally.

Hugs and Blessings,
Rabbi Mitch

Unbinding Faith

“God’s Spirit moves through us and the world at a pace that can never be constricted by any one religious paradigm. I love that.” - Bono (Paul David Hewson)

Paul David Hewson, most commonly known by his stage name Bono, is an Irish singer and musician, best known for being the main vocalist of the Dublin-based rock band U2.

For those of you who know me, you know that one of my universal themes is the arrogance of clergy of all faiths suggesting that the God of their understanding is the one you should believe and follow the precepts of. I have been down that path for many years and all I have seen that create is a Shoah – Calamity of the human race.

My decision to become a Rabbi and Spiritual Counselor was directly connected to my disconnectedness and disillusionment from my years of being told who, what, when, where, and how I should be and what would happen to me if I wasn’t.

Dogma and doctrine have divided us for so long. I am not sure that clergy of any faith have the right to begin thinking that they know God as God intended for us to know God. I agree with Bono 100%. God moves in mysterious ways at a pace that I know I do not comprehend, but have total and abiding faith in. For me to suggest to you what and how you should believe and practice borders on infamy. Your relationship with God is personal and intimate and only you can choose what God will be in your life.

Regardless of your religion, rituals are there for your joyful experience as a way of enhancing your relationship with your God, but please remember at all times, that what, why, how, how often and how many are between you and your God, not your cleric. No man or woman has power of you unless you choose to give it to them. I may learn from mere mortals, but my faith is in a God who powers that no person has, ever had or will ever have.

My prayer for you today will be to affirm the God within you as we all journey through God’s loving and compassionate universe regardless of whether we sit, kneel, lie down or dance. We are all God’s children and God loves us all equally.

Hugs and Blessings,
Rabbi Mitch

Awkwardness

“Move out of your comfort zone. You can only grow if you are willing to feel awkward and uncomfortable when you try something new.” - Brian Tracy 

Brian Tracy is a self-help author who has recorded many of his works as audio books. His presentations and seminar topics include leadership, sales, managerial effectiveness, and business strategy.

At every stage of my life I have experienced awkwardness within me. It has manifested itself through shyness, poor posture, unwillingness to try something new, shame, discomfort, poor body image, stammering speech, denial and more. I cannot imagine that I am the only one who has.

I have learned that it is not through my comfort that I grow, but through my discomfort and awkwardness that I grow. As a Rabbi and Counselor, I have had great success in helping people heal their awkwardness and find comfort within. 

What got me through mine and likely you through yours was ultimately taking action in the areas where I felt most awkward and finding out that I was okay or even better, quite good at whatever it was that had me feeling awkward. My two most awkward times in my life were as a teenager when I was chubby and had zero confidence socially. If a girl said hello to me I would fold over with my face down, start to sway and shyly say hello. That one lasted a long time. My other was learning how to play golf. The contortions I have to go through to get me into a position feel so awkward yet the results can be prodigious.

That is the point for all of us. We are all going to feel awkward at times about whatever it is we feel awkward about. We are human, vulnerable and lacking in some areas. I have learned that my feelings of awkwardness come only when I expect too much from myself. When I accept that I do okay not knowing how to do something, I become teachable and enjoy learning. As a result I feel less awkward. Once again, whether it is golf, dancing, public speaking or for that matter I do not know how to do or do not do well, I just need to smile inside, like me, let go and have fun.

My prayer for you today is that you say goodbye to your awkwardness and hello to your humanness.

Hugs and Blessings,
Rabbi Mitch

Sleep

“And if tonight my soul may find her peace in sleep, and sink in good oblivion, and in the morning wake like a new-opened flower then I have been dipped again in God, and new-created.”  -  D.H. Lawrence 

David Herbert Richards Lawrence was an English author, poet, playwright, essayist and literary critic. His collected works represent an extended reflection upon the dehumanizing effects of modernity and industrialization. In them, Lawrence confronts issues relating to emotional health and vitality, spontaneity, human sexuality and instinct.

In my journey as a Rabbi and Counselor to Addicts and unhappy people, I am frequently told, “I have no faith, Rabbi Mitch.” My response to that is, “You must be exhausted.” They look at me with a funny look wondering what I mean and I explain that there is no greater act of faith than closing your eyes and believing you are going to wake up. There was a time in my addictive life that I could not close my eyes as I was sure I was going to die.

Sleep is a naturally recurring state of relatively suspended sensory and motor activity, characterized by total or partial unconsciousness and the inactivity of nearly all voluntary muscles.  Wow! Did you ever put yourself to sleep with that thought in your mind? I certainly didn’t.

Until recently, we all just thought of sleep as down time; time we were not awake. Not any more. Researchers have found that not only are there many types of sleep, but our lack of it impacts heavily on our mood, performance and health. I will leave you to do your own research on sleep and what is best for you.

What I would like to briefly address is the above quote by D.H. Lawrence. How many of you ever pause and reflect on the magnitude of the power that is involved for you to close your eyes, be totally out of control and then to suddenly awaken, take a breath and start another day. As I have said many times in many ways, I do not begin to comprehend God however you choose to grasp the notion of God, but I do grasp the absolute glory and blessing of falling asleep and awakening to a new day. I am not a born again, hallelujah person, but I do see the merit in knowing and being grateful for the renewal of my life from one day to the next by powers much greater than me.

My prayer for you today is that when you awaken tomorrow, give pause, give thanks and find some gratitude. Do not ever take sleeping and awakening for granted.

I am a modern and independent Rabbi with an MSW Degree and 24+ years of sobriety providing addiction counseling focusing on healing, spiritual guidance and personalized life cycle events. If you, a family member or friend are in need of my services, please contact me at 954-755-3764 to get the help you deserve.

Hugs and Blessings,
Rabbi Mitch

Value

“We do not act rightly because we have virtue or excellence, but we rather have those because we have acted rightly.” - Aristotle

Aristotle was a Greek philosopher and scientist, student of Plato and teacher of Alexander the Great. His writings cover many subjects, including physicsmetaphysics,poetry, theater, music, logic, rhetoric, politics, government, ethics, biology, and zoology. Together with Plato and Socrates (Plato’s teacher), Aristotle is one of the most important founding figures in Western philosophy. Aristotle’s writings constitute a first at creating a comprehensive system of Western philosophy, encompassing morality and aesthetics, logic and science, politics and metaphysics.

Another way of saying this is; I cannot think my way into good action, but I can act my way into good thinking.

As a Rabbi and Spiritual/Addiction Counselor, I spent countless hours reading and listening to others to find new gems that I can use in helping you heal and feel better moment by moment.

I spent about thirty successful years in the fields of communal service and fund raising. During that span of time I had the distinction of meeting countless numbers of amazing people and some who thought they were amazing. I do not say that in a harsh way as I know that I was one of them for many years and once in a while still can be. Nonetheless, I do draw the distinction.

Zig Ziglar, the noted Americanauthorsalesperson, and motivational speaker often said that if you want the freshest and most creative ideas, hang around the non-profit folks as they are the masters. He was right. What he saw and what I learned was that the value that I derived from my legions of dedicated, bright, caring and capable volunteers who came in to stuff envelopes three times a week, to set up a room for a program or decorate for a party were just as valuable as the major donors who provided the needed funding to provide the essential services for those in need.

The value was the mutuality of respect they all had for each other. Money did not make their ideas better. If the idea was good it was good because it stood on its’ own merits. If it wasn’t it didn’t matter that the person who thought it up gave a large gift. The value and the beauty of being a part of something larger and greater than my self is that I learn the value of you and me working toward a common goal. If all I had were major donors and no other volunteers, I would have had an empty building and conversely, if all I had were volunteers I would have had no money to provide services. The value is that we all do together what we can to achieve a greater good than any one of us could achieve alone.

My prayer for you today is that you see your value and your neighbors so together you can add value to the next person you meet.

I am a modern and independent Rabbi with an MSW Degree and + years of sobriety providing addiction counseling focusing on healing, spiritual guidance and personalized life cycle events. If you, a family member or friend are in need of my services, please contact me at 954-755-3764 to get the help you deserve.

Hugs and Blessings,
Rabbi Mitch