I wish I knew that 10 years ago. I wish I has the foresight. We don’t see the the issue until we are faced with the situation.
OK. A course in foresight.
Take a situation. Like:
I am searching for a job. I am offered a job today. Should I take it? Fast forward 10 years in your mind. Now imagine you are 10 years older and still looking for a job. Do you regret the job you didn’t take 10 years ago (which is actually today)?
There are other methods of foresight – like listening to advice on your issue after asking a reputable Orthodox rabbi.
Doing Mitzvot also helps. Following Torah allows a person to structure their life and make good life decisions.
Once a person in Mexico City, who recently had decided to observe Shabbat, had a good deal to sell his office building. The buyer wanted to continue negotiating close to the entrance of Shabbat. The seller said he must stop to prepare for Shabbat. The buyer relinquished the deal. The week after an earthquake shook Mexico City. Due to the many buildings damaged and his remaining intact, he was able to sell his building at substantially more than had he decided to desecrate Shabbat and go through with the first deal.
Hashem has foresight. Observing his Torah allows us to tap into it.
My friend Meyer was talking about happiness. He said a formula where a person can be mostly happy.
There is always a silver lining
I knew of the concept, but he brought is out clearer.
We know Hash-m / G-d is good. G-d does good always.
Now if something happens that we think is bad – I hurt my ankle, someone yelled at me, someone called me a name – given the givens – we should not be saddened. We should make an effort to brainstorm why that could be actually good.
Someone I know was in a bus accident. They were hurt. They thought why did that happen – they were on the way to do a mitzvah. Afterwards the doctor proscribed time off from work – allowing them to take care of important business while being paid.
Technically one can be happy all the time. It’s a matter of understanding why what we think is bad is actually good. Looking at the silver lining in the cloud and putting our focus on the silver lining rather than the cloud – is the formula.
Having this attitude – one can be happy all the time.
Song of Songs was written by the wisest of all men – Shelomo Hamelech/ King Solomon.
“All the healing in the world are alluded to and included in the book of Shir Hashirim – the Song of Songs”. Therefore, a person in need of healing or salvation of any kind can be endowed with the blessing of salvation and mercy by reciting the Song of Songs.” If the patient is not able to say it himself his family members or his friends may say it for him. As is explained in the book “Maam Loez” (Song of Songs, at the end of the opening), And in the book “devarim niflaim ” – “Wonderful Things” (page 117).
Some say that the most propice time for reciting this is before the morning light. Thus is explained in the book yeshuat yaakov – “Jacob’s salvation”. A person who makes sure to read the scroll “Shir hashirim” Song of songs” are pleasant and sung every Friday evening – erev Shabbat- he is guaranteed to be forgiven for all wrongdoings
shir hashirim was written by Shelomo hamelech. rav nachman me breslev explains the power of its healing in sihot haran 243
A student of the baal shem tov – saw a fellow talmid – student praying on Yom Kippur. The student – feeling weak – pulled out a box of tobacco snuff to take a sniff. Noticing the gesture, he looked at the act with derision. “on one of the holiest days of the year he is looking to sniff tobacco?” he thought.
The baal shem tov took note of this. The student was studying one day before him. He prayed that he would be distracted. Distracted, the student could not concentrate. He tried to concentrate to no avail. Finally he took out his snuff box and took a sniff. He realized his distraction was due to his derision of the other talmid on Yom Kippur. He did teshuva – repented for his lack of judging favorably and was able to concentrate again.
Rosh Hashana is behind us. All Humanity of the world was judged- Jews and Gentiles. Hashem wrote his decrees. We hope all of us received a good verdict for the new year.
Hashem gives us many chances to rectify our misdeeds. Yom Kippur – the day of atonement – is when Hashem seals his verdict.
I was thinking about the concept of what happens. G-d has 3 books. The book for the righteous – who are written in the book of life. The book for the wicked – who are written in the book of death. The book for the average – that are hanging by their deeds.
A common expression to express that you want nothing to do with a particular person is “I wrote him off.” Meaning – I am cutting him off from any relationship. If you think of it, when Hashem writes someone in the book for the wicked – He basically writes them off.
Hashem acts with us middah Keneged middah, measure for measure. If we don’t write off people – God will not write us off. He will write us in the book of life. Some people write others off for hours, days, or life. Forgiving and forgetting is an admirable trait – whose repercussions can improve our daily life and give us long life. Once a rabbi was on his death bed. He was judged and in heaven – they added years to his life. Why? Because he never held a grudge- he always forgave people in his heart before going to sleep. [in the reading of the Keriat Shema on the bed.]
He forgave because he knew that any insult or suffering he endured was a message from Hashem due to his former deeds. The person who meted it out was just the messanger.
The way something starts sets the tone for the continuation. Thus we make signs to eat in the Rosh Hashana Seder.
Once someone proposed a shidduch- match to a young bachur – Torah learner. He said – “ask me after Rosh Hashana – the new year. Because I didn’t pray to Hashem for a good shidduch last Rosh Hashana. I will pray on the new year so the prayer will be fulfilled and have an effect on the shidduch. “
The home-office concept was introduced to me many years ago when personal computers were just lads. The popular computers of those days were the trs-80, the Apple II plus, and IBM PC. I think I even subscribed to a magazine on the subject.
People working from home have challenges – like motivating oneself, being alone, and dealing with distractions like kid interruptions.
What to do when you have to take care of your child and you have work piled up to the ceiling?
Take a deep breath and think of your priorities. A healthy, happy child, in my humble opinion takes precedence of the company’s marketing mailing. Yes, the kid will distract you. so take advantage and connect with your child.
Read, tell stories and use the time to appreciate your own child. Realize how they are like you when you were their age.
I needed gas. I went to the gas station. Got the gas. Then I noticed I needed windshield wiper fluid. I asked the cashier – How much is that? He mumbled $5.42.
I didn’t hear the price clearly. Then he repeated. 5-4-2. I thought he meant 5$ for two bottles. $2.50 for a bottle isn’t bad.
I said I’ll take 2. He charged me $10.84. He told me – one bottle is $5.42. Realizing the error, I then told him forget it, I’ll just take one. I ended up paying more than double than what I thought the price was.
We see things in life. we think we’re getting a good deal, but end up paying much more. Some Jewish children are not privileged to go to a Torah day school. Later in life they realize the value. Some Jews send their children to secular schools. And only afterwards, when children abandon the Torahs ways, they realize they paid a high price – for saving on Torah school tuition.
In this week’s Parasha, Ki Tavo – Moshe tells the Jews to inscribe on Rocks the entire Torah. It could be an allusion to the fact that when building a home or doing a new endeavor – it should be founded on the principles of Torah. Meaning- Torah learning is heard in the house, the father learns himself and with his children, the children are sent to Torah schools, the parents consult a competent Orthodox Rabbi for major decisions – like which school their child should attend.
I was at a wedding yesterday. I noticed the guy sitting next to me checking his phone.
For some reason it woke me up. Perhaps it was one of the most important days of the couples’ lives and he’s checking his messages.
I thought to myself – “oh no! is that what I look like when involved with my phone?”
Some self introspection is in order. Wow, I do waste much time on my phone. Some stay awake into the wee hours and end up sleeping with phone in hand – realizing the next day that last night they lost 3 hours of sleep on futility.
I had to do something about it. I thought what can I do to remedy this? To say I will not use my phone or not go into interesting tangents was a bit too radical.
So I decided to do something productive before wasting time. Perhaps put a load of laundry in the machine, make a hello call to a family member, study a little Torah. Then I can go off on the tangent.
I made a mental note – “In order to waste time, I had to deserve it.”
Want to waste time? Do something productive first. At least looking back you won’t feel so bad – you lost three hours of sleep – surfing the news.
In the best case scenario – you’ll get distracted from wasting time and accomplish something great.
Royalty obliges royalty to act in a manner befitting them.
Things to learn from the Royal Family.
Story number one –
Once the royal family of England held a reception. Margaret Thatcher – then Prime Minister- attended. She was dismayed when she noticed that the queen was wearing the same dress as she was wearing. It was not proper respect for someone to wear the clothes same as the queen. She tried to find a way to be inconspicuous, but was unable. After the reception she wrote a letter to the queen excusing herself. The queen responded that she did not even notice she was wearing the same dress. Royalty is above little Petty details. Noblesse oblige.
Once an Orthodox rabbi attended the Royal Banquet in England. He notified the staff that he only ate kosher and had special needs. The staff made special Arrangements the rabbi to eat kosher. In the Royal banquets special cutlery and China is used that has the insignia of the Royal Family. The staff arranged that he would have new silverware and China that was dipped in a Mikvah and obviously kosher food be served to him.
Somehow seating arrangements changed and he had to move from his seat. To take the silverware and the China with him to the new seat would be uncomfortable for him to do in front of all the people. Nevertheless he took his China and his silverware to his new seat. Prince Charles (now the king) noticed him carrying his plate. After the reception Prince Charles asked him why he carried his plates. The rabbi replied that he kept kosher and he had to take his special plates that was arranged for him with him to assure that he ate kosher.
Prince Charles was impressed. Another Jew that was not observant of the Jewish laws of Kashrut / keeping kosher remarked to the prince “I am also Jewish”. Prince Charles replied “I didn’t notice you carrying your plates to your new place.”
1 – Learn from nobility. We are the children of Israel. The children of Hashem. Thus we are also nobility. Nobility overlooks petty details.
2. By observing the Torah we gained favor in the eyes of others. But more importantly, we gain favor in the eyes concussion of Hashem.