Playing With Dolls: TorahCycle Tetzaveh

Kedoshim In my tomboy years I denied ever having played with dolls, even while seated next to a picture of younger me holding one. I did like the nested wooden dolls. They start out five inches tall, but when you’ve opened them all, the teeniest sits like a helpless baby in your palm. My closet’s pretty similar. In the work/playtime/dressy groupings, side by side hang the may-one-day-fit, looks-fine-now, and yikes-need-bigger-today wardrobes.

This week’s reading is about priestly garments. Would you think me more priestly in my smaller or my larger duds? In my jeans or a ceremonial robe?

The ways we appear to others may be very different than how we feel inside. We can look spiffy on the outside, while we protect and hide our smallest inner doll.

What makes us holier? The outer doll we dress for the world or something else? I’m definitely more priestly when my compassion and sense of responsibility to truth telling are greater. But I might be cleaning house or making bad puns about the sacred at the same time. Like our jeans and our ball gowns, we’re wired to be both sacred and irreverent. Neither makes us priestly by default. We have to earn it.

Science confirms faith: we definitely become more like how we say we and believe we are. Words or thoughts, if you aspire to something long enough, even if you’re playing dress-up and pretending, you help make it so.

Where I used to work, our standing joke about the boss was his request (so often prefaced by Helen,…) was Please make it so! The old Bubbe Jewish equivalent, If wishes were horses, beggars would ride.

But what if, indeed, as in quantum physics theories visualized in movies like What the ^%^#@*& Do we Know? or studies of the shapes that water takes around various emotions, we actually did make it so? If we became the selves we act, talk, and wish we were?

How does your “me” doll act and look to others, in your suits, your jeans or your robes? Can you be a holy fool, laugh at your foibles? Do you choose to be in the middle of the pack, suppressing your true self? Or can you strip down to your essence and interact directly with the world?

If you read any random fifty match.com profiles you might think virtually all of us were into long walks on the beach and romantic evenings. The few that stood out would either draw you in or push you away. Too often we with very used to hiding our most personal and special parts, be they sacred or damaged. Just like our wardrobes, we’ve all got both parts that make folks want to run like hell and others that inspire love and holiness.

Which aspects of self you encourage and nurture, which you believe in, and dress in like they are the truest you, are the ones you will grow into. Just like your inner holy robes, or your smallest inner doll, that’s the you we all deserve to witness and honor.

Waddya think? Leave a comment below.

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