By Rivka Perlman

August 17, 2012

Elul – Reach the Summit With Me!

Dear Friends,

The month of Elul¬†is the month that precedes¬†Rosh¬†Hashana¬†and Yom¬†Kippur. It’s an awesome, happy and incredible occasion. Were you even tempted to enter a self-help¬†group or one of these workshops that would jump-start¬†your life? When Elul is here, that’s exactly what you’ve got! A time of intense, amazing focused work where your every day is elevated and is moving you closer to your goal.

If you’re not Jewish and you’re reading this it may be helpful to; know that in Jewish thought, Adam (who wasn’t Jewish, obviously) was created on Rosh¬†Hashana¬†and it’s thus considered all of mankind’s birthday. Which means that Rosh¬†Hashana is the beginning of a new start for everyone. And this work that we’re doing leading up to the holiday is work that we can all do together.

My sister-in-law just came back from climbing Mt Kilimanjaro. Why did she do it?

For the challenge. For the climb. For the stripping away of all the limitations you thought you had and finding out how much more you can be. Here’s a post from her friend¬† after she reached the summit.

Tali Frankel wrote:

Kili¬†Climb Update. SUMMIT NIGHT. Summit night is a unique experience. The hardest thing I’ve ever done. The route is a dark barren wilderness filled with rocks and stones. You are enveloped in darkness, your only light a dim pool from your headlamp and bright stars in an icy indifferent sky. We were so lucky to have Venus perfectly aligned with a thin Cheshire cat smile moon and because of the meteor shower, shooting stars cascaded throughout the night. You are in file, but utterly alone. You look up and there is an endless line of headlamps above you, constantly moving and ascending it what feels like a never-ending climb. The ascent to Stellar peak is particularly harsh. The landscape is harsh, you can’t catch your breath, you shuffle forward leaning on walking poles, one torturous, freezing step at a time, concentrating on your breathing, counting steps and literally willing yourself forward. We rested just before Stellar point for the most beautiful sunrise in the world – one that brought with it warmth and comfort and renewed purpose. At Stellar we rested again until Lance gathered us and said, ‘Come on girls, you’ve made it, let’s go get the summit’ and we did. It’s still a further hour and although the walk is not as arduous, it feels like a small lifetime of hell to get there. Along the way, people who have already summited¬†and who are on their way back encourage and congratulate you and move you forward. Most of us were feeling dreadful – exhausted, headachy, nauseous, spent. We found a partner and in pairs and small groups, arm in arm made our way to Uhuru peak and salvation. It is immeasurably beautiful up there, you look down on banks of clouds, and shelves of glaciers and you weep because you can’t imagine how you survived to be standing on the roof of Africa. We hugged and cried and laughed and took lots of photos. I am so grateful, so blessed, so privileged to have experienced this. Thank you

That’s what Elul is – a chance to grow and shine and be our best, and join together and dig deep down for resources that most definitely have.

I’m so excited. Won’t you join me? My posts for the next month will be focused and I hope you’ll stay with me for the climb!

Have a a Great Shabbos, Rivka Malka



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