I love harmony. It is such a joy to hear the vocal harmonies of our worship team. It is thrilling to hear the oneness of the congregation singing in unity, flowing the prompting of the Spirit of God. But where is unity tasted?
Each week we sing the Sh’ma, Hear of Israel, in communal worship:
שְׁמַע, יִשְׂרָאֵל: יְהוָה אֱלֹהֵינוּ, יְהוָה אֶחָד
“Hear, Israel, the Lord our God, the Lord is one.”
In most Siddurim (prayer books), the final letter dalet (ד), of the word אֶחָד/echad/one is enlarged. The practice in some congregations is to give greater weight to the word אֶחָד/echad/one, by singing this word with a long breath, and ending it sharply, followed by silence.
It is in this silence, following the singing of אֶחָד/echad/one, that we taste unity in the Spirit. As no one’s voice is louder, or softer, more appealing or less appealing, rather we are ushered into a harmony in silence before the Lord ever so briefly; a silence that draws us deeper into vocal harmony in worship.
It is good to taste the unity of togetherness in silence as we allow the door, dalet (ד), of heaven to open among us.
Be well; Shalom