All That We Praise

The text for this song is an interpretive translation by Rabbi Ronald Aigen of a Hebrew prayer in the High Holy Day services. This piece evokes a feeling of gratitude for the gifts of life, despite life's many challenges. The accompanying image shows a scene from the process of crafting a Torah scroll, in which we find the first five books of the Hebrew Bible. 


English translation by Rabbi Ronald Aigen

Music by Rabbi Naomi Steinberg

Soloists: Berel Alexander and Bel-Ami Margoles

Choir: Temple Beth El Choir

Piano: Laura Welch

Violin: Marnin Robbins

Recording engineering: Steen


You are all that we praise you for - 

slow to anger and easily appeased.

For you do not desire a person's death,

but rather that one turn from one's path and live.

Until the day of our death you await us;

when we return, you immediately welcome us.

For you are the Creator

and you know the nature of your creatures,

that they are flesh and blood.

A person's origin is dust and one's end is dust,

at the hazard of one's life one earns a living.

We are fragile as pottery, so easily shattered,

like the grass that withers like the flower that fades,

like the fleeting shadow, like the vanishing cloud,

like the wind that rushes by, like the scattered dust,

like the dream that flies away.

ואתה הוא מלך אל חי וקים (v'atah hu melekh el chai v'kayam)

But you are the Sovereign One, the living and everlasting God.