1. Completion Date: Posts from your israel trip or prior will not count.
2. Text Submissions: Must include a full description of your activity completion.
3. Photo Submissions: Must include a photo attachment demonstrating your completion of the challenge AND a caption that puts the photo into context.
4. Video Submissions: Must include a video attachment demonstrating your full completion of the challenge.
The story is about the time when Dr. Yaris was a medical student and was doing rotation. The rotation that she discussed was the surgical one. She discussed the nature of surgeons and the surgical field, especially her chief of staff, Dr. Rosen. The attitude of the surgeons and the field in general was a hard one and very desensitized to the patients. It was all about the medical aspect of the profession. There was a patient nicknamed "Yoda" that left an impression. She was an elderly patient from Mexico that had a very calm and almost serene presence. She was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer and which the surgeons responded with wanting to do a Whipple surgery. There was an interaction where the surgeons were examining her and were all focused on the medical side, all wanting the experience of performing the Whipple, while Yoda stood there peacefully. Yoda would die from pancreatic cancer. Dr. Yaris then meets Dr. Rosen three years later at the oncology department at a private hospital. Dr. Rosen's 36 year old sister was there for cervical cancer. She died the next day and discussed with Dr. Yaris how difficult it was to be on the other side of cancer. She later on received information on a required seminar for the medical school she went to called "Morality in Medicine: How to Apply the Human Touch to Surgery." I liked the story because it shows that through our experiences in life we can become desensitized and loose focus on the important things in our lives. The story showed through life experience we do change and can become aware and grow. Sometimes we believe that it is impossible to change, but life and G-d will always give us opportunities to do so. A time where my family experienced real change was when my own father got diagnosed with pancreatic cancer and had the Whipple procedure. This story really hits home because that was a life changing event for my family. My father was always the one who took care everything and provided for our family. I always looked up to my father as well. Seeing my father battle cancer for 4 years broke my heart and made me feel real loss. I changed because I understand how precious life is and how difficult it is to lose someone you love. It changed my family to the core because we had to live with a family member with a serious disease. At the end my father was not the same person and this really changed me. It made me and my mother stronger and forced us to see what is important in life.
After reading the article "Making Synagogue Meaningful," the following tips I chose were: 1) 5 minutes of meaningful prayer are more powerful than hours of lip-service. 2) Don't expect to be "moved" by each prayer. 3) It's okay to linger if you feel particularly moved by a specific prayer.
I do think these tips could help make my synagogue experience more meaningful. I do pray but not on a consistent basis and I think sometimes the expectation is that you need to get on your knees and pray for 5 hours to have a connection from God, but that just is not the case. 5 minutes really can be more powerful than 5 hours of meaningless connection. Secondly, I naturally have really high expectations so if I go into services thinking that I am going to be "moved" by every single prayer, it just is not going to happen. Lowering expectations and taking what comes is a much more realistic approach. Lastly, it's okay to linger. I don't connect with every single prayer I hear when I do go to services, but lingering on something I do connect with could make it more meaningful.
If I had to give a tip to someone else to make their experience more meaningful, I would say go with other people. Having a group of Jewish people can help possibly make the experience more rich and meaningful, when you're sharing the religion together.
After watching the video, I have determined that Tashlich is a ritual in which you free your wrongdoings within a body of water. The Jewish people partcipate in Tashlich for many reasons. For example, they choose to pray next to a body of water because fish never close their eyes, similar to God. God is always watching us, just like the fish. Another reason is because we acknowledge Abraham's sacrificing of his son which was done on Rosh Hashanah next to a body of water as well. We do Tashlich so we can heal our relationship with God to start the process of repenting in the high holidays.
In the future, I would personally like to work on being a better person and living in the present. I think that I can put others first and really try to be kinder. I am always look so much in the future, that I think it is time that I concentrate what is going on in present life, or I will never be appreciative of what I currently have or what is currently happening.