Yechezkel Thirty-Five + Thirty-Six: Mountains

In sadly historic news, yesterday marks the first day since I began Project 929 nearly 2 years ago that I completely forgot to do my daily chapter. There have been 1 or 2 other days when I haven’t managed to post, but this is truly the first time that I completely forgot about this part of my daily routine. On the one hand, as I’ve said a few times, this is the longest I’ve stuck with any habit or challenge ever, so it’s still pretty impressive in my opinion. On the other hand, I am disappointed in myself for forgetting, and will be doing 2 chapters today to make up for it.

Chapter 35 focuses on Mount Seir and the people who inhabit it. “Because you have everlasting hatred, and you hurled the children of Israel by the sword, on the day of their misfortune at the time of the end of their iniquity (Ezekiel 35:5).” What drew me into this verse is the idea of everlasting hatred. No hate should be eternal. Even the most longtime of enemies should be able to, eventually, come to a consensus and find a way to make and foster peace between them. There are people who deserve not to be forgiven, but when hatred becomes institutionalized and nationalized, and is inherited as part of a culture, it can only beget additional layers of sadness and destruction.

In Chapter 36, the mountains of Israel are the recipient of the prophecy. “And I shall cause man to walk upon you, My people Israel, and they will inherit you, and you will be to them for an inheritance, and you will no longer continue to be bereaved of them (Ezekiel 36:12).” As I’ve written about before, I identify strongly with Zionism. I understand the connection of the Jewish people to the land of Israel, and have experienced firsthand the longing for it. This verse flips that emotion around through, and indicates that the physical land itself also feels the lack of the people when they aren’t there. It’s truly a partnership, with human being and earth being intertwined with each other, and each one somehow unfulfilled without the other.

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