New Moon Meditations by Dr. Terry Segal

tsegal@atljewishtimes.com

Rosh Chodesh Adar I began Tuesday, Feb. 9, marking a time of increased joy, good fortune and miracles. In leap years like this, we experience heightened bliss for 60 days during Adar I and II.

Dr. Terry Segal

Dr. Terry Segal

We seek divine sparks in Judaism and apply them to our current experience of life through the wisdom of Kabbalah, astrology, energy medicine and psychology. We need to feel that we’re empowered by, rather than victims of, these energies and influences, as if given a weather report suggesting we take an umbrella on days that forecast rain.

The zodiac sign this month is Pisces; the Hebrew letter, kuf; the ruling planet, Jupiter; the tribe, Naftali; the sense, laughter; and the controlling organ, spleen.

We strive to construct our own mazel, making it less about luck and more about conscious intention achieved through quieting ourselves, connecting and aligning with our Creator, then sharing our good fortune with others. The Talmudic statement Ein Mazel L’Yisroel suggests that not luck but Divine Presence has guided the Jewish people to survive.

Haman thought himself wise to choose the 7th of Adar as a weakened day for the Jews because it was the date Moses died. What he didn’t know was that Moses also was born on the 7th of Adar, and therefore the date brought greater mazel.

Each of us carries a divine spark of Moses’ soul. Our continuation defies the expected and supports the notion of assistance from HaShem and energies beyond our scope.

The sign of Pisces, represented by the fish, offers protection from the evil eye. The eye of the fish in an amulet, or at the center of a hamsa (the hand of Miriam in our tradition), may be blue or green because light-colored eyes were deemed unusual in cultures where dark eyes were prominent.

There are two fish, swimming in opposite directions, so we must all balance the Piscean traits we possess. The positive energies are sensitivity, emotionality, compassion, creativity and intuition. The negative include melancholy, lack of initiative, laziness and escapism.

The Hebrew letter kuf means “monkey” and suggests playful, agile movement. The actual letter has a tail that dips below the line. That’s a clue to all things hidden. Queen Esther, the heroine of the Purim story, had hidden her real name, Hadassah, and her identity as a Jew. The name Esther was taken from the Hebrew word seter, meaning “hidden” or “secret.”

As we move toward new leadership in our country, a practical application of these tools can aid in decisions leading to tikkun olam in our broken world. As fish dive into murky waters and remain unseen, people hide aspects of themselves. It’s a time to explore what remains hidden and what is revealed.

The ruling planet is Jupiter, representing abundance, grace, honesty, good deeds, loyalty, wisdom and bliss. These help us feel expansive and joyful.

Naftali is the tribe. It is the last of the 12 tribes and translates as “sweetness is to me.” Adar is the 12th month, and there is sweetness in having come through the cycle of the year.

Laughter is Adar’s sense. We’re said to be of good humor when we laugh. “Humors,” in Hippocrates’ time, referred to the four fluids in the body, yellow and black bile, phlegm, and blood. They coincided with the seasons and emotions expressed when imbalanced.

The spleen, Adar’s controlling organ, transforms food digested in the stomach and uses it for nutrition in the body, energy and the production of quality blood. We should monitor ourselves (and our presidential candidates), like our spleens, to be sure there is balance with no inflammation or swelling (of egos) and proper disposal or movement that eliminates toxic waste (and blockages that can divide the system into functional and nonfunctional).

We take in and release breath, align ourselves with HaShem, then drink in the sweetness of Adar until we don’t know the difference between “Blessed is Mordecai!” and “Cursed is Haman!”

Meditation focus: In your mind’s eye, dive deeply into uncharted waters to find your truth. What do you believe will bring about tikkun olam? Who will best represent your beliefs? Stay open to secrets revealed, and don’t miss an opportunity to express gratitude and joy.