Third Blessing: Holiness 1
The Experience of Holiness
It is difficult to define “Kedusha” or “Holiness”. There are definitions, however, Holiness needs definition because so much of it is experiential for us. We use the definition to shape our experience and to ensure that we do not confuse ourselves when we meet certain “Holy” people.
We usually associate Holiness with an occurrence or with someone special we have met in person or stories. Have you ever walked into someone’s home, and you feel that you are in the home of a holy person?
If we were to read a book about the Chafetz Chaim, and we wanted our home to be as holy as that of the Chafetz Chaim, we probably would not succeed. Did you ever read “A Tzaddik in our Time” about Reb Aryeh Levin? Reading about these people, you see that their homes were holy. You can feel it by reading the book. There is a powerful urge to want to emulate people like that. But it’s nearly impossible.
We begin by defining Kedusha without an official definition, but how we experience, or imagine it. The way to begin to define Kedusha is based on experience such as meeting someone who struck you as being holy, or if you ever felt a prayer achieving Holiness.
The best way to approach this blessing of Kedusha is to recapture such an experience in your mind before reciting the words.