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Is G-d on Spotify?

Friday, 11 February, 2022 - 11:55 am

Really? Did you think I was going to jump in on the Spotify issue? You know me better than that.

What I am really asking is, do you have divine music streaming in your life?

The Baal Shem Tov was once challenged on why his chassidim always seemed so quick to dance and be joyous. It seems a bit shallow, no?

He explained by way of a parable. A musician once set up in the center of town and started busking. The music was so captivating that passersby couldn’t help but be drawn to listen, and started clapping and dancing to the lively beat. A hearing-impaired fellow passed by and stared incredulously at the dancing crowd. Not hearing the music, he couldn’t fathom why people were cavorting in the street on a weekday afternoon.

Chassidim, the Baal Shem Tov explained, are in tune with the divine music that underlies all of existence. They are able to perceive the G-dliness that is at the core of all things. So, everything they encounter is a source of tremendous joy and exultation.

The Rambam writes that a physical person with a materialistic perspective on life, cannot appreciate spirituality any more than a deaf person’s appreciation for music or a blind person’s appreciation for colors.

Yet, the Baal Shem Tov argues that we are capable of tuning in to the divine music. How do we get there? We must work hard to train ourselves to develop a sensitivity to spirituality. As we spend long hours contemplating the divine truths of the universe, we can begin to hear the music.

So, whether you stream with Spotify, Apple Music, Pandora or any of the others, make sure G-d’s music is at the top of your playlist!

Shabbat Shalom
Rabbi Mendel Rivkin

PS: This year's Purim Feast theme is Purim on the Bayou. Please get in touch if you would like to volunteer to help with the event.

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