Transitions

Our car smells. Really bad. I found a free rug on the street . The day I found it, it happened to be raining a little and the rug was a bit damp. I put the rug in our trunk and we went about our day. When we arrived at home, we had forgotten about the rug and went inside. It happened to be the weekend and we didn’t get back in the car for almost 24 hours. When we got in the car next, the musty smell was overwhelming.

What happened? Or, better asked, what didn’t happen? Well, the truth is, when we had gotten home after picking up the rug, we forgot to take mindfulness of the transition from the car to our house and collect all of the things we had gathered together.

Now we have this smell in our car.

It got me thinking about something that has been on my mind since I saw my friend Jason Pinsky’s YouTube episode where he buys a Mezuzah. He goes to a store to buy a Mezuzah and the Rabbi in the store explains the purpose of the Mezuzah, which shortly said, is to remind us to be mindful as we move from one space to another. It comes from a handful of verses in the Torah:

Hear, O Israel: the LORD our God, the LORD is one.
And thou shalt love the LORD thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might.
And these words, which I command thee this day, shall be upon thy heart; and thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thy house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up. And thou shalt bind them for a sign upon thy hand, and they shall be for frontlets between thine eyes. And thou shalt write them upon the door-posts of thy house, and upon thy gates. - Deuteronomoy 6:4-9
Therefore shall ye lay up these My words in your heart and in your soul; and ye shall bind them for a sign upon your hand, and they shall be for frontlets between your eyes.
And ye shall teach them your children, talking of them, when thou sittest in thy house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up.
And thou shalt write them upon the door-posts of thy house, and upon thy gates; that your days may be multiplied, and the days of your children, upon the land which the LORD swore unto your fathers to give them, as the days of the heavens above the earth. Deuteronomy 11:19-21

What has developed out of this concept of “writing them upon the door-posts” is the mezuzah. A mezuzah is  small, typically ornate case that is placed at eye level on the entry way of a doorway.  The purpose is manifold. Of course, there is the obvious point, which is written in the verses. Remember to love God with all your heart everywhere you go. In every doorway, as we transition, the teaching is, to be mindful of the magnificence of the infinite and enter with gratitude and awe.

This brings us to the second part of the teaching. This is about us. The mezuzah is to remind us to collect ourselves and be mindful of who we are and all that we bring with us when we enter a space. If we take time to collect ourselves and enter the mind space of understanding, awe and gratitude before we physically enter a new space, then we are coming in to that space with blessing. Said in modern terms, we are vibin’ high.

Back to the simple lesson at hand. If my partner and I had spent the time in this particular instance bringing ourselves into this kind of mindfulness, we would have  likely collected everything from the car and it wouldn’t smell like ass in there right now.

Sometimes, the biggest lessons are found in the smallest moments, and if we care to notice them and take action, then our entire sphere of perception will be impacted by our mindfulness as we transition from one place to another.

So, I hope that today, you find deep mindfulness as you move from your home, to your car, to your office, and so on. I hope that you find space to breathe and collect yourself and realize and understand how blessed you are, no matter how hard life might seem. I also hope you find the ability to enter spaces with more presence and vibin’ as high as you can.

Peace, Love, and Rock’n’Roll,

Jesse Barney