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Weekly Newsletter Message

More Sexual Assault Allegations!

Are the growing number of sexual assault allegations making you feel "sick"? Are these revelations a sign of the decline and moral decaying of our society? 

There is no question that these revelations are discouraging, however, I actually see them as a healthy sign, not the opposite! 

Think of eczema or other skin rashes. They are unsightly and uncomfortable, however they are actually signs that your body is in a healing phase, which is a good thing. The skin is trying to expel waste, it is rejecting toxins as an attempt to return the body to health. 

For far too long, sexual harassment was ignored and brushed under the carpet.  It was accepted as “part of life”.  Today, we are finally rejecting it. The process is unsightly and uncomfortable, but it’s a sign that we are slowly beginning to heal.  

May we continue on this path to full “global health” until we realize a world in which power is no longer seen as a tool to manipulate and control, but to help and uplift. 

Shabbat Shalom 

Rabbi Benjy Silverman

Why is G-d doing this to me?

The story is told of a sculptor who was commissioned to design a bronze statue of a horse for the town square. After many months of work, he produced a sculpture with perfect detail – showing every sinew and hair follicle. It was truly a masterpiece! However, when the statue was proudly placed in the town square, everyone walked by and completely ignored it! The sculptor was very disappointed to find all his hard work going unappreciated. Finally a friend said: "I think the problem is that the horse is so perfect that people think it's real!  But if you would make a crack, then people will notice it as a work of art."

Sometimes it takes a crack to get us to appreciate the art in our lives. Only when something goes wrong do we begin to notice all that was right.  

We kvetch, complain and are miserable when things are not well, but  do we praise, thank and rejoice when they are? 

I often hear the question "Why is G-d doing this to me?" when people are facing challenges, I'm still waiting for someone to ask the same question when  all is well.

Everyday has its blessings, everyday has its good moments. Enjoy them!

Shabbat Shalom 

Rabbi Benjy Silverman

Are you a thermometer or thermostat?

This week’s Parshah opens with the words “And Sarah’s life was one hundred years and twenty years and seven years – the years of the life of Sarah.

Rashi explains that the Torah repeats the words "the years of Sarah's life" to teach us something about the quality of those years. As Rashi says, “All [the years] were equally good.”

Really? All her years were equally good? What about all the years she struggled with infertility? What about the time she was held captive in Pharoh’s palace or the troubles she had with Hagar?

Can we honestly say that she had an easy and good life?

It depends how you define a good life.

There are two kinds of people - thermometer people and thermostat people.

Just like a thermometer reflects the temperature in its environment, some people are reactive, they are influenced by what’s going on around them. So, for them, when they say, “Life is good,” it really means, “I like the way I’m being treated right now.”

Then there are thermostats. Just like a thermostat regulates the temperature in its environment. there are people who are proactive, looking for ways to uplift their environment. … for them  “Life is good” means “I get to do good” not “I am being treated well.”  They’re happy because they get to serve not because they’re getting good service.

Sarah was a thermostat, and as a result all her years were equally good. Regardless of what was happening to her, she reacted with goodness.

If you want to be guaranteed a good life, make sure you’re a thermostat.

Shabbat Shalom 

Rabbi Benjy Silverman 

 

IPhone X

Have you ordered your IPhone X yet?

The day has come. We are spending over a thousand dollars on our cellphones! And it’s well worth it. What these little gadgets can do is truly amazing.

We have advanced so much in so many areas of life over the last decades thanks to science and technology.

We now have the answers to so many questions that our parents could never answer, thanks to advances in all fields of knowledge.

However, there is ONE question that still remains unanswered: And it is the most important question of all:

WHY? - The why of Life. Why are we here. What's the purpose of the life we are given.  

As Mark Twain famously said:  “The two most important days in your life are the day you are born and the day you find out why.”

Its important because as Viktor Frankel writes in Man's Search for Meaning: “Those who have a 'why' to life, can bear with almost any 'how'.”

Your IPhone, amazing as it is, cannot answer this one simple question. Nor can science.  Science teaches what our world is, it is Religion that teaches us why it is.

There is only one place to go to discover the “why” of life. The Torah.  Join a Torah class today :)

Shabbat Shalom

Rabbi Benjy Silverman 

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