It is Sunday night May 8th, and I am in Jerusalem. Sunset marks the beginning of Yom Hazikaron, the day this state has set aside to remember all those who have been killed – soldiers and victims of terror – since the state came into being. It is a day devoted to suffering, to a collective experience, to feeling pain and sorrow.
Its just now hitting me that Yom Hazikaron is here. I havent given it enough attention I guess, life pushing forward as it does. But right now, my thoughts are with all those who lost their lives because of this conflict. With those souls lost to anger and violence, drawn into the unnatural state of war. With those who were not actively fighting, those who died simply by living in a conflict zone.
I lost a cousin recently who I barely knew. He was in the Army because that what young Israelis do, and died by accident. A casualty of being placed in a situation where one is constantly surrounded by things designed to kill. His family, like so many others here mourns twice a year here. Once for his Yartzheit, and once more today.
Today I join a nation in mourning, and pray that next Yom Hazikaron the number of those who have lost their lives to this conflict is the same as it is today. I pray that this suffering brings with it healing, that this collective day of Shiva brings with it the comfort that sitting in mourning with family can bring. And that comfort begins to allow us to move forward, to rise up from the dust of mourning and face the rest of our lives with courage and compassion. I pray that we are able to experience this pain of ours, so profound, and steel ourselves with the determination to end suffering – all suffering.
הִתְנַעֲרִי מֵעָפָר קוּמִי