Daily April poem: instructions for drawing a map
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Coming soon: Reb Zalman's glorious new translation of psalms

Many years ago I wrote a post about new translations of psalms, and one of the translations I referenced was from my teacher Rabbi Zalman Schachter-Shalomi, a.k.a. Reb Zalman. His creative, heartfelt, pray-able, earth-conscious renderings of psalms weren't published anywhere in print, but there was an audio cd available through the ALEPH store, and I loved hearing him speak the psalms in his own inimitable language.

Now, during the Omer this year, there's a project afoot to fund a print edition of Reb Zalman's renderings of the psalms. Here's a short video -- featuring, among others, Father Matthew Fox, Rabbi Sharon Brous, Brother David Steindl-Rast, and Pir Shabda Kahn -- reading his Psalm 100:

(If you can't see the embedded video, you can watch it at IndieGoGo or watch it at YouTube.) Here's a little bit about the project:

Published by ALEPH: Alliance for Jewish Renewal, Psalms in a Translation for Praying will be the definitive edition of Reb Zalman’s heart-felt translations for praying in English, developed and refined over decades. Newly edited, punctuated, and formatted for ease of use, the book will be a beautiful devotional companion.

Psycho-spiritually accurate for our age, this translation is gender-balanced (neither God nor God’s people are exclusively masculine or feminine) and understands that, in Reb Zalman’s words, “often [our] ‘enemies’ are not on the outside.” Although oriented to use in Jewish liturgy, care has been taken to ensure that Christians, Sufis and others can use this volume in prayer with ease.

I can't wait to pray from this volume. The hope is to publish it by Shavuot / Pentecost, the time when Jewish communities celebrate the revelation of Torah -- the yahrzeit (death-anniversary) of King David, to whom the psalms are traditionally attributed. I just donated to help fund the project. I hope you will, too: Reb Zalman's Heart-Psalms at IndieGoGo.