"I heard a voice from heaven saying, 'Son, let this woman be a bride to you in the restoration of my people. Let her be a mother for these people, regenerating souls through the salvation of spirit and water.'" (Hildegard of Bingen, Scivias)

Tuesday, November 1, 2016

Apologizing for Anti-Semitism Again

The wise and lovely Jewish woman who embodied the sweet piercing truth and mercy of Mother G-d for me in a spinoff from the "Black Lives are Sacred" October series not only freely and generously forgave me, but graciously unblocked me and then accepted my Facebook re-friending request after our extensive and healing message box conversation. She then circled back to rejoin the comment conversation at the original site of my grave sin and first sincere but inadequate apology. Her comment characteristically focused on gratitude for her own learnings, our mutual friend's role in our reconciliation, and anticipated blessings in a new relationship forged in the crucible of her redemptive suffering. My final response completing the story and sharing my own learnings for the permanent record is posted here with her kind permission.

I am profoundly grateful for your courage and holiness at every stage of this process which has taught me so immensely much and, in G-d's amazing mercy and yours, even led to the start of a real friendship when all I deserved was the valuable learning experience of losing the FB one.

Had you only been risked retraumatization by sharing your righteous anger and pain at the anti-Semitic desecration of your Day of Awe it would have been enough.

Had you only defended yourself and your people by blocking the egregious dismissal of that sharing it would have been enough.

Had you only grappled with an apology still failing to center you as the primary victim, returning nonviolent listening for abusive silencing, it would have been enough.

Had you only wrestled with all your feelings in vulnerable self-inquiry and conversation with a wise and loving friend who shared your perpetrator's unjust privilege--swallowing the bitter herbs of disproportionate reception and praise for her fruitful prophetic critique over yours--it would have been more than enough.

Had you only reached out to resurrect a slaughtered dialogue and share your sacred heart with the perpetrator it would have been far more than enough.

And had you only responded to the teshuvah you co-created with Her with your astonishingly generous forgiveness it would have been a galaxy far, far more than enough.

Sending a virtual hug but before that--if you will kindly accept the medieval peasant ritual enacted by proxy in Confession at the monastery yesterday--kneeling and kissing your hand in utter delight at your tikkun olam labor with the Holy One to open the sacred gates of Her transforming love for me, and yourself, and everyone we can better serve in the future.

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