March 4, 2022 / 1st of Adar II, 5782
From Strength to Strength
strengthened by our strength
fortified by our resolve
This is the last of the five Torah portions that describe the construction of the portable mishkan and everything in it. Pekudei is also the final Torah portion in the Book of Exodus.
After completing each Book in the Torah, it is the Ashkenazi custom to call out three times – with great strength, enthusiasm, and a full heart:
חֲזַק חֲזַק וְנִתְ חַזֵּק
Hazak, Hazak, v’Nithazek
Hazak, Hazak, v’Nithazek is generally translated as something like “Be strong, be strong, and we will be strengthened.” It can also be understood as “from our strength, comes more strength,” or “our strength gives rise to greater strength.” Through the frame of my Shmitah journey of embodiment, I am taking it as: From my inner strength, my physical body will be strengthened. My inner resolve and determination will fortify my actions in the world. From my inner reflection and tenderness, my capacity to offer lovingkindness and compassion will be even greater.
As I prepare to travel to the Osa Peninsula next week to explore deeper into the wilds of the jungle, I am aware of how much I am relying on my inner strength to navigate uncharted territory for me. I am also grateful for the sheer physical strength I am able to muster these days as I journey onward.
Wishing everyone a Shabbat Shalom – and may we be strengthened by our own strength,