So after weeks of trying to track down the right person to speak to, we finally got a number for him, and the first thing he wanted to know is: 'Is she G-d fearing?'
He wouldn't even begin to discuss any details with us, until we could give him some evidence, from a notable rabbi who knew us, that we were Yireh Shemayim.
I clearly then had a whole big crisis about whether I really am G-d-fearing, or at least, G-d-fearing enough. I know I talk to G-d every day, and I often try to do what He tells me, but I also have occasions when I can be quite cheeky and rude to the Creator of the World.
Luckily, it wasn't up to me to decide it. We asked my husband's Rav for a 'reference', and he was happy to oblige. That's the first hurdle crossed.
The next hurdle, was that I had to talk to the Rav myself, directly, to get specific guidance.
I have this weird 'gift' that whenever I get a bit excited or super-stressed, I can take out every piece of electrical equipment within 10 miles. Things just stop working, or pack up, or go on strike.
So I called the Rav yesterday - and within 5 seconds, I'd managed to take his mobile phone out of operation. And then by the time it came back to life, he was busy with something else, and we had to reschedule the call.
So I'm still anxiously waiting to hear about whether I can go ahead with all my planned JEMI stuff how I want, or whether it'll need some tweaking.
In the meantime, it made a big impact on me that the first criteria for working with Jews, and Jewish energy, in an halachically-acceptable way, is that the practitioner has to be 'G-d-fearing.'
In Israel, maybe it's easier to find those people (although still not easy) but in the rest of the world? And especially in places with very few Jews? Fuggedaboudit.
Swami so-and-so, Yogi whatever-there-name-is; Joan the sweet Buddhist who's really 'into' their Hatha whatever-it-is - what harm can they be doing, spiritually? I'm still trying to track down the answer - and I'll share whatever I find out with you, dear reader.
But in the meantime, whatever else you're doing with your Jewish energy - whether it's stretching, exercises, 'healings', or even massage (and don't even get me started on all the REALLY dodgy stuff out there…) - make sure your practitioner or teacher is genuinely G-d-fearing.
How'd you do that? Great question!
I don't know.
But if they aren't keeping mitzvoth and they don't believe in G-d (our version, as opposed to 'the universe', whatever that means), that's probably a pretty clear answer.
If you're still not sure, talk to G-d about it, and see what He tells you. And in the meantime - don't risk yourself, spiritually, by doing things that appear 'harmless' to us, but could be causing us a lot of damage. To be continued…