Aleph Canada Newsletter - May 2010


I have the privilege of living on a beautiful little island which serves as home for about a thousand people and a place of sanctuary and sanctity the other ten to fifteen thousand people who spend all or part of their summers here. Yet, in this age of high speed internet and inexpensive phone calling, we are far less isolated than we once were. Our community is blessed with many people who practice thinking globally while acting locally. We are painfully aware of the suffering of others and the environmental degradation which our human societies seem unable or unwilling to fully recognize.

In this world, our spirituality, both as personal practice and as reinforcement for our ideals, is crucial to our ability to make the transitions necessary for our survival and growth as a species on this fragile planet we call home.

As I’ve written you before ALEPH, like so many other organizations dedicated to human spiritual and social growth, is having its difficulties in the material world. It seems that all of us who are committed to inner development, mitigation of human suffering, and the cultural arts which nourish us in such crucial ways, are those who are considered the easiest to limit in times of economic constraint.

It has been gratifying, then, that many of you rose to the occasion during the most extreme moment of our financial worries. It is especially gratifying that the number of our chai per month donors has now grown to nineteen! Small and predictable giving is what gives us relief from having to badger you with fund-raising appeals and, more important, allows us to focus on delivering program and creating the resources which help us to practice our Judaism in a way which enhances our lives and the lives of others with whom we share this planet. So, please, consider becoming a chai/month donor if you possibly can.

And, on the subject of program, please see the announcement of our first High Holyday retreat below and through the related links, as well as a progress report on ongoing projects.

This summer I am planning to make some changes in the way my life is balanced and I look forward to sharing them with you in my next note.

In the meantime, I hope that you all are enjoying the emerging Spring as we count our way toward our annual  reunion at the base of Sinai.

Rabbi Daniel Siegel