The Man with a Thousand Lives

You learn a lot in the Beit Midrash / Torah house of Study. I overheard a conversation between a rabbi and a new student. He said – how does Torah compare to my life. I like to go skydiving – that’s exciting.

The rabbi answered him – “When you live for yourself you live one life. When you live Torah – you live a thousand lives. You learn about your study partner’s life, your student’s life, your friend’s. People come to you for advice for their concerns. You are not living only your life – but the lives of all those people.”

Real people. Real friends. Real concerns.

The boy tried to answer – I live for others when I skydive. The Rabbi made a joke – “What as a Kapparah / atonement for others?” The boy said “Has VeShalom / G-d forbid.” The rabbi also said the same – but he persisted with his question – “How do you live other’s lives when you skydive?”

The boy wasn’t able to answer.

I thought it was an interesting way of looking at things. I don’t really think I ever thought of it that way.

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