Sunday, October 10, 2010

Keeping it together...

גל עיני ואביטה נפלאות מתורתך

"Open my eyes, and I will gaze upon the wonders of Your Torah."

Reb Shlomo of Radomsk (author of Tifferes Shlomo) offered a different interpretation of this verse:

Master of the World, open up my eyes, so that when a fellow Jew is in pain - I will see that a letter has fallen (נפל-אות) from Your Torah.

We are taught that there are 600,000 letters in the Torah, and 600,000 Jewish souls.

A sefer Torah that is missing a letter, or has a crack or marking between two letters, effectively separating them, is rendered unfit for use.

When we see a fellow Jew who is struggling, and getting further away from his or her Source, we are all in peril. The Radomsker was begging for the ability to empathize, to relate to this poor Jew. By doing so, he could hope to elevate his brother and himself.

The same applies if there is God forbid any discord between Jews; according to our sages, the only vessel that can receive and contain blessing is a whole one, devoid of any fracture or fissure. If the structure is compromised, the whole vessel is useless.

If we lack unity, if things come between us and our brethren, can we really be so astounded when we hear about so much tragedy in the world? Can we honestly question why Moshiach hasn't come?

One person in a position of influence has made this idea his manifesto. An article he wrote was guest-posted to Cross-Currents, although I discovered it through Rabbi Harry Maryles' blog.

Please take the time to read it. In this man's quest, I see more than a glimmer of hope. It's what I would love for my children, the kind of environment I would want them to learn in...

No comments: