A Good Person

Commentary by Dr. Ursula A. Falk



   In unserem Talmud kann man vieles lesen und alles ist schon einmal da gewesen


In our book of knowledge, you can read and learn much and realize everything we read in this voluminous book has already occurred.  If we did study and learn we could avoid many negative situations.  We are a part of the human race, one individual; nevertheless, our experiences have been repeated eons before we grew in our mother’s womb.

Unfortunately, we too often believe that we are unique.  We are different and change our acts, our thoughts, and unfortunately our religion.  We want to be modern and ignore the “preachings” of our parents and those who came before.  We paint them with a brush that feels nothing like the previous model that did not understand “modern life.”  We believe that we have the ability to create our future by ignoring all of “the things” that held our forebears back from being happy.  We do not need “Hashem,” nor who or what we cannot see to help us when we need help.  We will use modern machines, skills, and learning.  If we twist the correct knob or push the right button we will have no problems and need no help.  It is only when we see and feel that there are things and situations that we cannot change that we realize that we need more than ourselves to overcome the misfortune that faces us at a particular moment.  We then know that if we practice the ten commandments and treat our brethren as we want to be treated, our lives will have meaning!

Some of our brethren believe that attending a synagogue is enough, or giving a poor man a meal or eating kosher is the answer to being a “good Jew.”  It takes much more to be a “Mensch” and a Jew.  It is very important to be a decent human being who helps his brother and his fellow man when he is able.  It is also important not to judge others without thoroughly knowing them, their needs and their histories.  We can judge ourselves.  There is a Hebrew expression that applies.  You can think of yourself as a decent person, but if you are only for yourself, who are you?  “Eyn Ma Mi Lee!”


 Dr. Ursula A. Falk is a psychotherapist in private practice and the author of several books and articles.

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