We’ll present today the most common Hebrew expression for a new beginning – ‘daf cha•dash,’ a new leaf or new page.
This romantic expression uses a book as a metaphor for human life where each page symbolizes a new beginning. This metaphor is common in many languages and is not too old and surely not ancient, since the Biblical book probably wasn’t similar to the modern book. Also, the book as we know it today was not a common article until after the industrial revolution. In contrast, the modern expression uses the word leaf ‘daf’ which was an ancient means of written media.
A book then unfolds stories and your book contains you life story. But unlike a purchased book which is complete, our book is an ongoing story where we have the power of the author. We, giving our human limitations, dictate the course of things to come in our life. This realization, as reflected in this expression hold the key to hope. We are not doomed, not everything is sealed and we are given the most important power vested by God in us: the ability to choose our way in life. Without this ability the whole Bible would have been meaningless. Education would have been useless.
By turning a ‘daf chadash’ we can make a ‘tikkun,’ correction, in our life course and enjoy the reassuring value of the hope to do so.