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Thought for the Day: Confusing the Satan

We blow shofar every weekday of the month of Elul except the day before Rosh HaShana (even if Rosh HaShana would fall on a Shabbos and we wouldn't be blowing).  On Rosh HaShanah we blow a long blast at the end.  The Mishna Brura says that one of the reasons for both of these is because it confuses the Satan. I sure hope the Satan doesn't see that Mishna Brura!  Good thing we all have that secret code on the beis medrash combination locks; I am sure the Satan will never figure out that Aleph means 1, Beis means 2, Gimmel means 3, etc.

On the other hand, feel free to bring the Satan in to the beis medrash (in fact, Chazal says that's exactly the way to properly deal with the Satan) and learn up this Mishna Brura with him.  The Satan will still be confused by our behavior.  I realized this a few years ago when a fundamentalist xtian fuming about homosexual churches.  He figured that he surely had an ally in me, so he said, "They take verses from the Bible completely out of context and interpret it their own way to prove their own crooked opinions!"  I agreed that was terrible.  I agreed when he said that anyone who does that is obviously not after the truth.  After a few minutes of my enthusiastic agreement with everything he was saying, my friend paused and said, "Wait... you think that's what we do..."  I just smiled as he sputtered and stammered; and finally he just walked away talking to himself.

You know what confuses the Satan?  Living up to Reality.  Putting the desires of the Creator first.  Of course we all make mistakes, but on Rosh HaShana when it comes time to publicly announce our allegiance to the King of kings, HaKadosh Baruch Hu there is no wiggle room.  We blow the shofar for a month to awaken our hearts to t'shuva.  Then, lest anyone think we are doing what we think it is a good idea, we stop.  That way we get to enjoy hearing the blasts on Rosh HaShana because HaShem said to hear them, not because we thought of it.  We eat a festive meal on Rosh HaShana because we have trust that Our Father, Our King will love us enough to accept our t'fillos.  Lest anyone think we are just eating like any other Yom Tov; we stop and blow the shofar once more to show that we are going to eat a meal decreed by the Creator of the world, who is our King.  That really confuses the snoggers out of the Satan.  And no matter how many times it happens, he just never gets it; but we do.

K'siva v'Chasima Tova!


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