Sunday, May 13, 2018

Ponderings of the Perkei Avot 4:4-6

RaYBaSH’s Ponderings of the Perkei Avot
Chapter 4:4-6
By: Yehudah ben Shomeyr

Rabbi Levitas of Yavneh would say: Be very, very humble, for the hope of mortal man is worms.”

You put your pants on the same as everyone else, you bleed red blood like everyone else, your flatulence doesn’t smell like roses, so don’t think more highly of yourself than anyone else, we all have the same fate…. Worm food.

“Rabbi Yochanan the son of Berokah would say: Whoever desecrates the Divine Name covertly, is punished in public. Regarding the desecration of the Name, the malicious and the merely negligent are one and the same.”

Numbers 32:23 But if ye will not do so, behold, ye have sinned against the LORD: and be sure your sin will find you out.

It is said, who you are in secret is the real you. The most moral you are is what you do when you thing no one is watching. But that fact is Someone (God) is always watching. A Jew should be Torah observant privately as well as publicly. How does one desecrate the Name? Not necessarily by saying, “God D*** it!” or such, although these are ways to desecrate the Name the worst way is being a hypocrite; claiming to be a good Jew and actually living like the devil on the side. You may think you can live a double life, by a double life takes only half as long and eventually you’ll screw up and you will be found out and in the end you will have given God and Judaism a bad name.

“Rabbi Ishmael the son of Rabbi Yossei would say: One who learns Torah in order to teach, is given the opportunity to learn and teach. One who learns in order to do, is given the opportunity to learn, teach, observe and do.”

There is no better commentary or illustration than from ones own life. Motive is everything. The ultimate reason for study is performance, not to show off ones teaching skills.

-- Yehudah ben Shomeyr