Posts Tagged ‘Shehechiyanu’

Life has taught me so many lessons.  With each experience, I find myself looking at both the gifts and the challenges.  When I am really self-aware, I know that growth comes from both sides of the spectrum.

In Judaism, we have a tool for marking sacred moments or what I call shehechiyanu moments.    The shehechiyanu is a blessing that is said to mark:

  • The beginning of a holiday
  • When a ritual is observed for the first time during a year, or for the first time in a person’s life
  • When something happens for the first time (for instance, when the first snow falls in a season)
  • When food is enjoyed for the first time in a season (for instance, when fruit comes into season)
  • When you wear a piece of clothing for the first time.

I also choose to say the shehechiyanu, when I note something precious or sacred happening and when I experience something I don’t frequently note. Rainbows bring tears to my eyes; double rainbows make my heart sing.  A beautiful piece of artwork touches me deeply and a gift of nature leaves me speechless.  Yesterday, I saw the branches of a tree in a unique pattern, for that I recited shehechiyanu.

Lately, I have found myself saying shehechiyanu when I hear a beautiful song or see children playing.  Each and every moment counts and it is my hope that I treasure each moment and mark many of them with the blessing.

Blessed are You, Lord our God, Spirit of the universe, who has kept us alive, and sustained us, and enabled us to reach this moment.

Within the last couple of weeks, I found myself struggling through darkness in one area of my life.  The stress brought me down and I had a hard time embracing the challenge and finding beauty anywhere within my realm.  When I realized that I needed to find a chant that would propel me in a healthier direction, I asked one of my holy chant sisters if she could suggest one.  I knew that chant could be used as a tool or medicine to guide me through this challenging doorway.  She gave me the most precious gift when she said that she would think about it; within a very short period of time she suggested the Shehechiyanu chant by our teacher Rabbi Shefa Gold.  The power of the chant helped me to again find balance within and notice the world around me too.  The link to Rabbi Shefa’s Gold is:


Shehechiyanu reminds me to receive the gifts of life.   Regardless of what is happening, sacred moments can be found.

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