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Audio: Thanking and Loving Your Neighbor

Uncomfortable, but I did it, and it wasn't easy...and you can do it too!
6/8/2014, 4:11 PM

A7 Radio's "The Derech Eretz Show" with Rabbi Elan Adler
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A powerful pillar of being a mench is Hakarat Hatov, recognizing the good that comes your way. We become aware of it, and acknowledge and it, and then THANK the source of it. Often that last part is hard to do, especially if the good was done a long time ago. "Hi, remember me? I wanted to take a moment and thank you for what you did for me a long time ago...." These are not easy words to say, because we risk being forgotten, or we feel silly. But the rewards are enormous. I give a few personal examples.
"You shall love your neighbor as yourself." Another huge pillar of being a mench. But are we supposed to love terrorists, Nazis, Al Queda, Hamas? Are we supposed to love evil people? Maybe the Torah is speaking not about extreme cases, but about our family members, friends, neighbors, colleagues.....but even more, it is teaching us that healthy relationships begin with a basic premise- that you love yourself. It's easy for some, practically impossible for others. I have what to say about that.
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Thanks for tuning in, keep that derech eretz thing going my friends, and have a great week! Shalom!

Rabbi Elan Adler served as a pulpit Rabbi for 25 years in Stamford, Ct and Baltimore, Md prior to making aliyah in 2010. Rabbi Adler received his Smicha from Yeshiva University, had the privilege of being an aide to Rabbi Joseph B. Soloveitchik for two years, was an activist Rabbi in support of Israel and aliyah, and served as the President of the Baltimore Board of Rabbis. During his tenure as a Rabbi, he was known for being an engaging speaker and teacher, never failing to make easy connections with Jewish people as well as the non-Jewish and African American community. While serving congregations, he was appreciated for being welcoming, embracing of all people, and bringing congregants closer to their Jewish heritage. For more information on Rabbi Adler visit
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