So often in life, we want proof before we are willing to believe that something exists or is possible.
Show me the evidence.
I’ll believe it when I see it.
Prove it to me.
Many people are reluctant to try something new — a new recipe, a new business strategy, a new life hack — before they see proof that it works.
Perhaps this is you.
But consider how often you believe in something you don’t see.
What We Believe Without Seeing
When the moon is new, we cannot see it, but we don’t doubt that it’s there. We know it’s there, even though it doesn’t appear to us in the sky the way it does when it grows more full.
The same with the sun. When the sun isn’t visible in the sky, we don’t look up and say it’s not there just because we don’t see it.
What evidence do we have that it’s there?
Only that it’s light outside.
But what if the light were coming from some other source that we don’t even know about? What if it were some big asteroid or some cosmic source we have never seen?
It sounds so silly to suggest this, and that’s my point.
So strong is our trust that the sun is in the sky, even when we don’t see it, that we don’t even consider an alternate possibility for what could be brightening the sky.
So strong is our belief that the moon is there, even when we don’t see it, that we never doubt it’s existence.
The Visual Cues
So many of the Jewish holidays celebrate big miracles. Highly visible acts of God. On Passover we recall the spectacle of the plagues and the splitting of the sea.
Even Shabbat, the weekly Sabbath, is based on visual cues: after creating for six days:
And God saw all that he had made, and behold it was very good. — Genesis 1:31
Only after seeing the fruits of his work did God declare the seventh day to be a day of rest.
Celebrating What We Cannot See
Rosh Chodesh, the Jewish celebration of the new moon — the beginning of the new lunar month — stands apart. Once a month, we celebrate that which we cannot see.
We offer praise to God in the moment when the moon is in mystery, not when it is fully illuminated.
We remember that trust is born not from proof, but from faith.
Trust emerges in the darkness.
A Gift For Women
The sages say that Rosh Chodesh is a holiday that was given specifically to the Jewish women, to honor them for not participating in the sin of the Golden Calf at Mount Siani.
The women refused to participate in creating an idol — a visual aid for worship.
They remained steadfast in their faith, even in the absence of visual proof.
This is the essence of Rosh Chodesh:
we celebrate and honor our intuition — what we know in our hearts to be true — rather than relying only on what we can see.
The moon is in the sky. We don’t have to see it to believe it.
This is the essence of faith: we celebrate what we cannot see, because we know it’s there.
As in Nature, So Too in Life
What’s true for nature and its elements is true for us in our lives as well.
Every undertaking has paid off, even if in this moment you cannot see how or where.
You are in the right place.
You don’t need to see it to believe it.
Believe it, and then you will see it.