Moods and Jewish Music - Sadness
Sadness is a result of loss, and is an opposite of happiness. If happiness is resolution, sadness is the introduction of doubt. " How can I cope in the future after this loss," a person would say. In Jewish tradition, sadness is a crucial stage one must go through when suffering loss, but it is only a stage. It is forbidden to mourn excessively, or to become permanently sad. One who does so will have created a self-fulfilling prohecy about not being able to cope.
Rather, when a person is not so sure of themselves and accepts that self-doubt, they will be able to appreciate that they need to grow. If someone denies a natural sadness, they will also be unable to cope, lacking an understanding that things of changed and there is now a new reality to cope with. The Jewish mourning rituals of seven days of sadness and consolation, followed by gradually increased re-entry into society allow this balance to be struck well.
In this way, sadness is a key to greater growth and future happiness. It should be experienced only in its proper time, as King Solomon said, " There is a time to laugh and a time to cry," and only in its proper measure. May we all be spared from sadness-causing events and enjoy truly joyous resolutions to all of our challenges.
" Shifchi kamayim libech, nochach p'nei Hashem = Pour out your heart like water before the Countenance of God." (Lamentations)The sages said that one must bless God for the seemingly bad things as enthusiastically as for the good things, because ultimately all things are for the good.
Recommended listening: " Turn, Turn, Turn," by The Weavers, " Tomorrow," from Annie, Rachmaninoff 2nd Piano Concerto, 3rd movement.