Try to look for the bright side - and then bring that light to others

I am less worried about the riots and the virus than about us taking responsibility for our actions and showing compassion for others.

Rabbi Eli Hecht ,

Good Deeds at Haifa home
Good Deeds at Haifa home
Home Front Command

For the past few months we have been experiencing a rollercoaster of moods. The daily news is confusing and down right depressing.

The reports read like this ...

-The stock market has a bad case of hick ups. One month up and the next month it’s down.

-Employment figures are moving ahead and then we are informed that the unemployment figures are reaching dangerous levels.

-The airline industry is picking up and the next thing we are told that planes are grounded and airports are closing.

Places of worship are open as well as casinos. Then they are not. Hotels, restaurants, parks, museums, beaches and bars opened and closed as well. Zap - everything is in crisis. The Government in Israel says a lock down is imminent and in that case, everything comes to a stop. What’s happening, we ask?

Let me share a story that might shed a little light on how we can view the situation.

There's a story in Jewish folklore of an astrologer who foretold a calamity that would affect his kingdom. All the crops would be tainted with a dangerous bug. It would poison the minds of people causing them to lose their rationality.

When the astrologer told the king of this ominous news, the king said, "Since you are the harbinger of this news, you'll have to put away one year's quantity of untainted crop to sustain yourself. During the year you will run around whispering the words, 'Remember, there was a time when we were all sane.'”

It seems that our generation has eaten from the tainted crop. The tainted crop has created a mode of behavior that has us making excuses for everything by pointing to political officials and blaming them for our own failures and unhappiness, and for things over which these officials have no power. We forget their past achievements, and that we are the ones that elected them in the first place so that we too bear responsibility.

Irrationality is the new form of thinking, sadly our minds are poisoned.

Very few of us have not eaten from this bewitching crop and leaders now have the sad mission of whispering the words, “Remember, there was a time when we were all sane,” reminding us of the original plans when Goverments were out to help us become more productive and give us a better quality of living. When there was no statue toppling, antisemitism was taboo, and there was no virus.

Personally, I am not worried most about the riots and the virus, I am more concerned with people taking responsibility for their actions. We need to de-bug our brains by being responsible for our thoughts, deeds, and actions - whether it is wearing a mask and social distancing, or keeping the law and respecting private property and our heritage,.

The great Maimonides had it correct when he stated that Man is given free will to choose the proper path of life and is responsible, at all times, for his actions.

I say don’t worry about the great picture, It doesn’t help. If you want to worry, then worry about the things you can change. Care for those that have less then you. Show compassion for your fellow human beings. If you haven't until now because you were too weighed down with your problems, then make amends. Have a positive attitude and ask G-d for forgiveness.

Being positive and happy is the only way to deal with the worries that danger brings.




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