As a doctor, I see outliers. I see the 35 year old man who has never smoked, has perfect health, no family history, present with a stroke. I see a 30 year old mother of two who has been vegan and exercised all her life, diagnosed with cancer. I have patients who have done everything wrong and by all metrics should have been dead a decade ago continue to thrive. These medical extremists become my norm. And the woman who after two strokes refuses to take my medication and ends up dying in her sleep, and the man who narrowly escapes death when his aorta bursts and does not take his blood pressure medication and ends up in a coma in a nursing home, they too become my norm. But, our tradition forces us to avoid norms. When everyone is joyous, as in #Sukkot, we think of the homeless, the bereaved, the victims of random acts of violence as we saw in Las Vegas shooting , the widow, the orphan; when everyone is mourning, we think of all that is good in this world- the daily miracle of life, the calm of the hummingbird’s flight, the motley sunsets, the heart that beats in a chest in the same place tirelessly for 92 years, the pleasure of emptying a full bladder, the awakening of each morning. Nothing should be taken for granted. Not joy, nor despair, not health, nor disease- for we are but a piece of a much greater puzzle. All we have is this moment in a wild and colorful world full of surprises. In the endless stormy ocean of life, our only anchor remains #love.
One of the wise sayings of my 85 year old Yoga teacher, Raghavan is “Bodily Functions Should Be Pleasant Or Something Is Wrong.”
In the chaos there is always light, in order to see the stars we need the darkness. This is the only way I know how to operate and stay sane in all the devastation.
Sukkot is the third of our amazing holidays, we just had Rosh Hashana, the Jewish New Year, and Yom Kippur, the day we ask for forgiveness and start fresh.
Sukkot is one of my favorite,
Enjoy a fun description below,