September 1, 2012 – Parshat Ki Tetze – “What should be forgotten this year?”
Now we really turn the corner and head down the final stretch, as we count just 3 more shabbats before the New Year.
There’s no looking back now, literally.
Among the several obligations in this week’s parsha, one of them reads, “When you reap the harvest in your field and forget/overlook a sheaf in the field, do not turn back (lo tashuv) to get it; it shall go to the stranger, the fatherless, and the widow – in order that G-d may bless you in all you do.” (Deut. 24:19)
With Rosh Hashana and Yom Kippur on their way, we begin to focus on t’shuva/turning – on making amends in our lives, on changing habits and on returning to our life’s priorities.
In light of this season, how then can we understand the idea which teaches us “not to turn?”
Though we enter a period of life review at this time perhaps some things are meant to be forgotten. Indeed, we can’t remember everything. How are we to know though which should be remembered and which forgotten? We may learn that those things which in the end help others, are to be forgotten and require us not to turn back.
What has happened this year that should be forgotten, which doesn’t require us to turn back, because it serves others?
Shabbat shalom and “only 3 to go,”
Rabbi Mark Melamut