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עשה תורתך קבע – אמור מעט ועשה הרבה

Reflections on the past – Israel Ride 2012

Posted by rabbiart on November 13, 2012

One week later, plus a day, I’m still thinking about the experience of the 2012 Israel Ride. It was an up and down experience for me, no pun intended.  Arriving late because of Hurricane Sandy, joining the Lost Tribe on the first day, missing the last big downhill on the last day on the advice of the paramedic. Bed bug bites, I think, in the Eilat Hotel motzei ride so to speak.

All of it pales in comparison to meeting someone who is a bigger DeadHead than I am. And with one of the most beautiful self-made tallis I have ever seen or could imagine. Conversations with Abeer and seeing the importance and value of seeing the so-called “other” as not other but just another human being.

Of course I’m avidly and actively recruiting not just friends but some of my cycle riding co-workers to come join the fun next year. And I bagged my first $100 donation from a co-worker who has always said that he never supports causes.  Why?  Because the peace making work resonated with him like crazy. His donor attribution thing says “in support of peace”.

During the period of reading Breshit there is something in every parshah that leaps off the page in connection with the struggle over this at one and the same time promised and feels like cursed land. So much conflict, so much fighting.  When we read in the Torah of brothers struggling in the womb, and then see how rabbinic literature felt it necessary to lionize one and demonize the other, it’s hard to hold onto the belief that peace will come.

The Bike Ride is incredibly effective therapy for strengthening hope.  That’s why I’m taking the cure again next year.

Rabbi Art Gould


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