A day of jubilee outside a majestic walled city bathed in bright golden light. A canopy of fruits and flowers of all kinds has been strung across four maypoles. Behind them, a pair of revelers appears to greet us with boughs of holly and laurel, and behind them, more residents of the city are coming to join them. The gates of this city are flung open; all are exiting the safety of its walls, for in this kingdom, they know they have nothing to fear and nothing to defend.
This is the proverbial promised land that awaits our faithful seeker in the Three when he decides to “take the plunge” and cross over Jordan: A land of milk and honey, of water turned to wine, and the light of Divine love shining abundantly over all. In our personal lives, we experience this whenever we let go of our defensiveness, our fears, and other manifestations of ego that separate us from others, and welcome other people into our lives with a spirit of sharing and forgiveness, giving love for its own sake. This process can take many forms, whether we are volunteering our time at a local charity, tutoring a young person or counseling a friend in need, or sharing our love through poetry, dance, and song. It can take the form of donating books to the public library, or donating blood at a local blood bank. It can be something as seemingly trivial as holding the shop door open for the person behind you, helping an elderly person get on or off the bus, or adopting an animal from a local rescue shelter. In Talmudic lore, the “bestowal of loving acts” is said to be one of the three pillars upon which the whole world rests, and whatever form it takes, the spirit of selfless giving is the creative power of love brought to its ultimate, perfected state.
Meanings in a reading can include: Accomplishment of the work, perfected effort, the healing power of love, the creative spirit in its noblest aspect, and the City of God; but also success delayed, unexpected obstacles, the creative spirit misapplied, “the drawbridge raised” or the fretful heart. We all have the power to experience “heaven on earth.” It is as easy as opening our hearts and blessing our brothers as we bless ourselves. By exposing our vulnerability, we are made strong; by expressing our humility, we are exalted. Angels surround us always—we only need to ask them to work their miracles through us, and that can be as easy as performing the smallest act of kindness.