Was time always in existence or was it a creation like all others? When we investigate the qualities of Hashem our Creator, we are limited in our capacity as finite beings to understand God’s Infinite Qualities. Yet one thing is made clear to us through Maimonides: Hashem exists outside of time. If that is the case, we can logically assume that time itself is a creation and, like all finite things, also has a beginning, an end and a Creator.
The Sages teach us that the Almighty created units of time (days, weeks, months, years etc) and invested unique powers and energies into certain days of the calendar year. While secular holidays largely commemorate historical events, in Judaism, we consider our holidays to carry within them special potentials that can be accessed by its observers every single year. Our year is a spiral. It takes one full year to make it around the spiral until you reach the same “altitude” once again.
Hashem revealed each Holiday’s energies through specific historical events. Rosh Hashana, as an example, carries within it the powers of Renewal, exemplified in the birth of the first human being, Adam. Yom Kippur carries the power of atonement, a quality that was revealed when Moses came down from Sinai the second time, after achieving atonement for the sin of the golden calf.
When we prepare for the High Holidays in the Jewish month of Elul with Teshuva/repentance, what kind of energy exists for us at this time? The sages explain that we have access to the very same power that prompted the creation of the world in the very first Elul – God’s desire to do good! The only reason Hashem created the world was because of His desire to bestow the ultimate good. Every Elul Hashem’s benevolence is aroused once more and we have the tremendous opportunity to grow closer to Him and express our desire to be bigger and better people.
Wishing everyone a Shana Tova!