Skip to main content

Thought for the Day: New Opportunities, New Challenges

I have a chavursa in Petach Tikva.  We learn Motzei Shabbos (for me)/Sunday morning (for him) using Skype.  We were not able to learn last week because his internet was down.  In his email he bemoaned the fact that this was a technology created problem and 10 years ago would not have been an issue.  That's true, of course.  On the other hand, 10 years ago I couldn't have lived in Chicago and had a chavrusa in Petach Tikva.  The new technologies do have new pitfalls, but they also present to us new opportunities.

Chazal tell us that every generation that does not build the Bais HaMikdash, it is as if they destroyed the Bais HaMikdash.  Building even a simple structure, such as a single family dwelling, requires lots of different skills.  You need plumbers, electricians, carpenters, painters, etc.  Each one has his responsibility to achieve the final outcome.  On the other hand, when the group who lays the foundation is finished, they are not going to see a house.  Everyone has to his part at the right time; it is only once everything has been completed that the whole structure appears.

We have our part to do in building the Bais HaMikdash.  Our part could not have been done earlier, but the job isn't finished until we complete our tasks.  Our job isn't to lay the foundation; Baruch HaShem that was done our Chazal and the generations that followed.  Now we just have to do the finishing work and it will all come together.  Bimheira v'Yameinu.


Popular posts from this blog

Thought for the Day: Thanking HaShem Each and Every Day for Solid Land Near Water

Each and every morning, a Jew is supposed to view himself as a new/renewed creation, ready for a new day of building his eternal self through Torah and mitzvos.  We begin the day with 16 brachos to praise/thank/acknowledge HaShem for giving us all the tools we need to succeed.  We have a body, soul, and intellect.  We have vision, mobility, and protection from the elements.  Among those brachos, we have one that perhaps seems a bit out of place: רוקע הארץ על המים/Who spreads out the land on/over the water.  After all, it's nice to have a dry place to walk, but does that compare to the gratitude I have for a working body and vision?  As it turns out, I should; as explained by the R' Rajchenbach, rosh kollel of Kollel Zichron Eliyahu (aka, Peterson Park Kollel).  Your best bet is to listen to the shiur; very distant second is to continue, which I hope will whet your appetite for the real thing.

First... since we have dry land, I don't have to slog to work through even a foot…

Thought for the Day: Using a Mitzvah Object for Non-Mitzvah Purposes

As I am -- Baruch HaShem -- getting older, I am more cognizant of the fact that I'd like to stay as healthy as possible right up the moment I leave this world.  Stuff hurting is not the problem (I am told there is an old Russian saying that once you are 40, if you wake up and nothing hurts -- you're dead), stuff not working, however, is a problem.  To that end, for several years now I commute to work by bicycle (weather permitting, 30 minutes on an elliptical machine when weather does not permit).  I recently took up some upper body weight training.  Not because I want to be governor of California, just simply to slow down loss of bone mass and extend my body's healthy span.  Simple hishtadlus.  I have an 18 month old grandson who is just the right weight for arm curls (yes... I am that weak), so I do about 10 reps when I greet him at night.  He laughs, I get my exercise; all good.  (Main problem is explaining to the older ones why zeidy can't give them the same "…

Thought for the Day: Hydroponically Grown Humans... I Feel Sick

I am quite openly not at all objective about abortion in particular and the treatment of human embryos and fetuses in general.  I am, after all, the survivor of a failed abortion attempt.  Not "thought about it, but couldn't go through with it"; not "made appointment, but then chickened out at the lost moment"; but, "tried a procedure, but was unsuccessful in attempt to abort".  Nonetheless, I try very hard to listen to the liberal arguments (which I also used to chant as part of the general liberal catechism), and am genuinely empathetic to the plight of women who find themselves in that difficult position.

What I heard on NPR this morning, however, has left me feeling physically ill.  You can read about it, if you like, but here's the bottom line:  Scientists in Cambridge have achieved a new record, they fertilized a human ova and then kept it alive in vitro (that is, in a test tube/petri dish in a laboratory) for 14 days.  The scientist involve…