Human, Why Do You Sleep? | Reconstructing Judaism

Human, Why Do You Sleep?

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Papercut of selichot verse Human why do you sleep?

This papercut by Rabbi Kelilah Miller centers around the piyyut (liturgical poem) from the selichot service:

?בן אדם מה לך נרדם
Human, why do you sleep?

Awakening to our need for re-connection and forgiveness is partially a reawakening to the strangeness of our dislocation from the Blessed Holy One, and to the strangeness of the inner cry that we silence most of the time in order to function.


The figure is impassive, with eyes closed, but prayerful hands reach out from inside the heart-space, reaching towards the world. The inner awakening stirs up an awakening in the tree (of Life? Of Knowledge?), which leafs out to reach back towards the figure. The city-scape in the background is the context of the social world - the world of tightly-packed relationships and our fraught relationship with the earth and its resources. 

Art, High Holidays, Spirituality
Education Director/Cantor, Ohev Shalom (Wallingford, PA)

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