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Omer Day 5: Humility & Love, a perfect combination

I've been learning mussar - a study of Jewish values - with rabbi and cantor colleagues for about a year. We started with the value of anavah, humility. 

Humility (to use my teacher Rabbi Marcia Plumb's explanation) is making sure that there's room for other people on the bench of life. 

Humility is recognizing one's intrinsic value as a human being, no more or less than any other person, worthy of taking up space and air in the world. 

Who's a humble person? I guess it's like being a mensch; if you think you're a mensch, you're probably not. For obvious reasons, a humble person usually doesn't brag about her humility, right? 

The kabbalists say that Day 5 of the Omer should be spent reflecting on the humility of loving-kindness. 

If I truly love someone, our relationship flows more smoothly if I'm willing to make space for that person while at the same time making sure that my needs and desires are equally honored. A loving relationship requires acknowledgement from both parties that the other one is equally important. The best relationships have people who both complement and compliment each other. 

It's probably impossible to get to that level of perfection in a relationship, but how sweet would it be if we all tried? 


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