Friday Candle Lighting: 6:47 PM
Shabbat Ends: 7:41 PM
Let It Go!
“You are standing…” (29:9)
A few weeks ago, I mentioned that one of the great things about having been part of Ohr Somayach for more around three decades is that I have met some people who are clearly living on a different level to the rest of us mere mortals. One of these great souls distilled the essence of one’s relationship with one’s fellow into three principles: His first principle is, “I was created to serve others, and no one was created to serve me.”
The second is, “I wouldn’t do it to you. But if you do it to me – it’s okay.” This doesn’t mean that a person should be a doormat and invite the world to trample on him, but post facto – if you did something to me that I could really take you to court for and get back at you — and I give up on that — I get forgiven for all my sins.
The source for this is the Gemara that says, “Anyone who ‘passes over on his character traits,’ meaning one who resists the knee-jerk reaction that many have to resent and want revenge — and just lets it go – so, concomitantly, Hashem lets go on all our sins.
It’s true that this level of saintliness is beyond the letter of the law, but it sure sounds like a good deal to me. All of my sins? Another source for this idea is the Tomer Devorah, which says that even though we constantly flout the Will of Hashem and use our G-d-given abilities to go against His Will, nevertheless, He constantly continues to give us the power to continue to do this and doesn’t “hold a grudge.”
During this week, before Hashem opens the Books of Judgment, I can think of no better exercise than to think of someone who has wronged us — and remove all resentment from our hearts. And with that we may approach the Heavenly Throne.