The Counting of the Omer

The Counting of the Omer (Sefirat Ha-Omer) is the Torah’s way of marking the time between Passover and Shavuot, the journey from liberation to revelation. The tradition is to count both the days (49) and the weeks (7) leading up to Shavuot, starting on the second night after Passover. Originally an agricultural practice, Sefirat Ha-Omer evolved into a spiritual practice, a kind of daily meditation that prepares us to receive the wisdom of the Torah once again.

This year we invite you to journey through the seven weeks of the Omer together as a community, using each week as an opportunity to reflect on the divine quality assigned to it by the Kabbalists. We have set up a message board where you can post stories, intentions and blessings – and even audio recordings, JPEGS and GIFs – tied to the theme of the week. We’re excited to hear from you, and to generate a collection of reflections from the community that will help carry us through this journey.

The spiritual principle (sefira) assigned to the first week is Hesed – Kindness. The Rabbis teach that our world is created and sustained through kindness. So please check out our Omer Share board and share with us some act of kindness you have witnessed or experienced over the last year that has sustained you through these challenging times.

Here are the names of the weekly sefirot:
Week 1 – Hesed (Kindness) – חסד
Week 2 – Gevurah (Strength) – גבורה
Week 3- Tiferet (Beauty) – תפארת
Week 4 – Netzah (Endurance) – נצח
Week 5 – Hod (Empathy) – הוד
Week 6 – Yesod (Grounding) – יסוד
Week 7 – Malkhut (Majesty) – מלכות

And here are two guides to counting the Omer, one in English and one in Hebrew