Jason Terry: “There’s no feeling like it. It’s like a hip-hop song. You’re just there grooving, swaying back and forth. It seems like the net doesn’t even move.”
Ben Gordon: “You lose track of time. What quarter it is. You don’t hear the crowd. You don’t know how many points you have. You don’t think. You’re just playing. Offensively everything is instinctive.”
Vince Carter: “It feels like nobody’s out there, you’re playing by yourself. You don’t care how good a defender is guarding you.”
Joe Dumars: “It’s like an out-of-body experience, like you’re watching yourself.”
Eddie Jones: “All you see is the rim and how big it is. It’s a mental thing. Everything is just correct. Your shot is correct. The way you’re coming down is correct. Your form is correct. Everything.”
Pat Garrity: “The ball feels so light, and your shots are effortless. You don’t even have to aim. You let it go, and you know the ball is going in. It’s wonderful. It’s like a good dream, and you don’t want to wake up.”
And Iverson himself: “You honestly don’t really feel it when the shots are going down. You don’t get the goose bumps until the fans start to appreciate what you’re doing.”
In such moments all obstacles to perceiving God everywhere are consumed…. It is a rare and precious moment… Usually it comes and goes almost in a flash. But no matter: the real impact of hitlahavut is in the memory of such moments. They are stored in the contemplative’s mind and become important steps on the road toward the much cooler but longer lasting goal of [devekut], an attachment to God in which one may live and act.
It is my belief that the hitlahavut, the religious fervor, of Hasidic Judaism, is a sorely missing ingredient in the life of the American synagogue.
Ha-ha stories amuse and entertain.Ah-ha stories expand and teach.Ahhh! Stories connect and inspire.
“Giving is living,” the angel said. “And must I keep giving again and again?” My selfish and querulous answer ran. “Ah, no,” said the angel, as her eye pierced me through. “Just give till the Eternal One stops giving to you.”
A rich man cam to Jacob [the baker] and sought his advice. “Why must I give…?” “Because [giving determines] your freedom,” said Jacob.The man was astonished. “How does giving… bring about my freedom?” “You see,” said Jacob, “either the key to a man’s wallet is in his heart, or the key to a man’s heart is in his wallet.So, until you express your charity, you are locked inside your greed.”
An angel of the Lord appeared to him in a blazing fire out of a bush. He gazed, and there was a bush all aflame, yet the bush was not consumed. (Exodus 3:2-3)
Now Mount Sinai was all in smoke, for the Lord had come down upon it in fire; the smoke rose like the smoke of a kiln, and the whole mountain trembled violently. (Exodus 19:18)
Somewhere out of timeIn the mystery of time…I remember how I once stoodAt your mountain tremblingAmid the fire and the thunder…
And, yes, I can rememberHow the thunder was my heartAnd the fire was my soul.
O God, I do remember.The fire burns in me anew.And here I am, once more.
The last of my story: after I was accepted to rabbinical school, my mother sent me a cassette tape in the mail, with no indication of what it contained, but simply a note attached that said, “put in your tape deck and push play”. It was the voice of my grandfather, and the tape from my Bar Mitzvah- a message I probably didn’t even hear when I was 13, but at least didn’t remember. Maybe I wasn’t supposed to hear it then. Who knows? But 14 years later, and some 12 years after his death, I not only heard but felt the blessing he offered me.
Not fame , not fortune… not even happiness. “hitlahavut,” he said. It was an old Chassidic term- you see, he was supposed to be the next in a long line of Chassidic rabbis, but gave up that calling when he emigrated to America as a teenager. “I wish you hitlahavut in your life,” he said, “the burning fire that comes from your soul when your heart and your mind are dedicated together to that one holy purpose for which God placed you on this earth.”
For a fraction of a second in December, a dying remnant of an exploded star let out a burst of light that outshone the Milky Way’s other half trillion stars combined, astronomers announced Friday.
[It] seems so improbable it’s a puzzle right now, said NASA’s lead scientist. “There’s something going on here that we don’t understand.