Count for this day in the evening of the date shown above.
Counting the Omer began the second night of Passover, which was on April 9, 2020. The last day of counting is May 27, 2020.
You can learn more about the practice and history of counting the Omer here.
day 34 of the Omer: qualities of focus
The fifth week of the Omer is focused on Splendor and Humility (Hod). The quality of Hod is sometimes talked about as the kind of splendor that is so awe-filling that we can’t help but be humbled. But this sense of awe can also be nurtured as we look in our world and in our lives for what is splendorous, big or small, and allow ourselves to be humbled into gratitude.
The sixth day of the week is focused on Connection and Creativity (Yesod).
The thirty-fourth day is focused on Connection and Creativity (Yesod), Splendor and Humility (Hod), and the relationships that make them possible .
the blessing for counting the Omer
It’s traditional to say a blessing each evening, followed by reciting which day it is in the Omer journey. Here’s the blessing in English, feminized Hebrew, and the traditional masculine Hebrew. Use whichever Hebrew and/or English versions work for you!
English version of the blessing
Blessed are you, Eternal One-ness, Source and Breath of All Life, that has made us holy with your mitzvot, and compels us to count the Omer.
If you prefer feminine God language in Hebrew:
בְּרוּכָה אַתְּ יָהּ אֱלֹהֵינוּ רוּחַ הָעוֹלָם אֲשֶׁר קִדְּשָׁנוּ בִּמְצַוְּתָהּ וְצִוָּנוּ עַל סְפִירַת הָעֹמֶר
B’rukhah at Yah Eloheynu khay ha’olamim asher kideshatnu bemitzvoteha vetzivatnu al sefirat ha’omer.
If you prefer masculine God language, or just like the traditional way of saying the blessing:
בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה אֲדֹנָי אֱלֹהֵינוּ מֶלֶךְ הָעוֹלָם אֲשֶׁר קִדְּשָׁנוּ בְּמִצְוֹתָיו וְצִוָּנוּ עַל סְפִירַת הָעֹמֶר
Baruch ata adonai, eloheynu melech ha-olam, asher kidshanu b’mitzvotav vitzivanu al seﬁrat ha-omer.
here’s today’s count, in Hebrew (transliterated), and English.
Ha-yom arba-ah u-shloshim yom, shehem arba-ahah shavuot v’shishah yamim la-omer.
Today is thirty-four days, which marks four weeks and six days of the Omer.
Let me know if you have any questions. I’ve never done this before via blog post, and need your help to make sure everything works.
prefer Hebrew script?
If you prefer to read the blessing and count using Hebrew text, check out this app.
Or look in your favorite siddur (prayer book). It can often be found at the end of the evening service.
today’s poetic meditation
I’m posting a poetic meditation for each day to enhance the journey. Each meditation is focused on the kabbalistic qualities (sefirot) associated with the day.
The kabbalists often used the image of gates to describe the portals of consciousness represented by the sefirot, and that’s reflected in the ending to each of the meditations.
The kabbalists also often referenced the Tree of Life, upon which the sefirot are represented by the trunk and branches.
Some people like to read the meditations when they say the blessing at night. Others like to contemplate them in the morning to provide spiritual nourishment for the day’s activities.
Experiment, and see what works for you!
Yesod b’Hod: the splendor and humility of being tied together
A woman and her young niece tie the left shoe of one to the right shoe of the other. They link arms and walk awkwardly, their four feet uncertain how to navigate this new conﬁguration, their stumbling fueled by delighted laughter. They begin to call out, “middle,” when it's time to move the tied feet, then “other,” for the unbound feet, and for a brief exhilarating moment the rhythm carries them along. The niece says, “Shhh,” hoping they might keep the rhythm in silence, which they do for a few short steps, until their feet get confounded again, and they stop, sighing and chuckling, in fun-ﬁlled frustration. Laughter is a kind of Hod, splendorous and humbling, tying us to our stumbling and bumbling humanity. Connection and laughter, the 34th gate.
Copyright Shifrah Tobacman, 2012.
prefer to hold a book in your hand?
You might be interested in Rabbi Shifrah’s collection Omer/Teshuvah: 49 Poetic Meditations for Counting the Omer or Turning Toward a New Year. Write to firstname.lastname@example.org to get a copy!
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