LESSONS OF JUDAISM

 

Love Every Jew

   There once was a boat carrying passengers across a wide sea.  One man suddenly began to drill a hole beneath his seat through the bottom of the boat.  The other passengers began to yell for him to stop.  He defended his actions since he was only drilling under his seat, his portion of the boat.  They others explained that his actions may be in his portion but it jeopardized everyone.  They were all in the same boat together.  They would all be drowned by what he did to his portion of the boat.

 

   The 243rd mitzvah to love every Jew is written: “Love your fellow man as yourself.”1  It does not say to “be in love” but “to love” every Jew.  It does not refer to feelings but is about the proper focus.  When you love another your focus is not entirely on your self but also on the other.

 

   The Jews are a special people with a unique mission.  We are not just individuals. “Every Jew” refers to the whole Jewish people.

 

   While standing in a slowly moving line to a movie I notice in the line ahead three young Jewish college students, a woman and two males.  The males wore kipas, identifying them to everyone as Jews.  The woman became impatient with the slow line and rudely cut in front.  She then stood waiting inside the theatre with a smirk on her face.  When her friends finally entered the theatre she chided them for waiting in line instead of cutting in with her. 

 

   She was rude and did not care what other people thought.  How many seeds of anti-Semitism were formed or nourished in the gentiles who made up most of the line?  She did not realize that what she did could affect the entire Jewish people.

 

   To love every Jew is to try to act in a way that will enhance the good of the entire people, not just what is good for one individual.

1. The Mitzvah to Love Your Fellow as Yourself, Rabbi Menachem Mendel (the Tzemach Tzedek), p. 21.

 

TOPICS

 

Growth

Equilibrium

Find a Good Teacher

Judaism, A Religion of New Beginnings

Knowledge and Wisdom

Never Give Up

Our Greatest Teacher

Progress

Slow and Steady Wins the Race

Truth; Our Most Powerful Tool

Value of Routine

Relationship: To G-d

Dishonoring Torah

Feeling Close to G-d

G-d Wants the Heart

Incomplete Offering

Time Spent

Whole and Willing

 

 

Prayer

Answers to Prayer

G-d Will Answer Your Prayers

Most Effective Prayer Offered

Purpose of Prayer

Why Prayer Services Aren’t More Entertaining

Role of The Jewish People

(Purpose of Creation)

Eternal Life

Everything is Connected

G-d’s Hidden Presence

Key to Success

My Part

Our Actions Change the World

Revealing the Concealed

Why the Animal Soul Controls the Body

 

 

Relationship: To Another Jew

Harbor No Enmity

Practicing Forgiveness

Spouses

Who Are your Victims?

The Soul’s Mission

Just Right

Leaving a Mark on the World

Perfect Family

Perspective

Repair Your Part

 

 

Relationship: To Community

Charity Given With Joy

Love Every Jew

Mitzvah of Giving Up

Single Entity

Special Role of the Baal Teshuvah

Unity From Acceptance

Whole Story

Trust and Faith

Choices

Choosing for a Purpose

Don’t Put G-d in a Box

Faith

Stick With G-d

 

 

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