Shabbat

Judges and People

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Judges and People

Where do we connect to G-dliness? 
Who influences us into a closeness to the spiritual in the world?
And where does the Torah direct us to get spiritual nourishment from?

My friend Rabbi Josh Hoffman wrote this week " the Torah says, “and you shall not cut it (fruit trees)....and quoted the Ibn Ezra 
as connecting that commandment to the later wording in the portion
“for a man is a tree of the field.” Then Rabbi Josh writes that "Maharal,... gives an elaborate explanation of this imagery, explaining that a man, like a tree, grows and bears fruit, namely, the actions that he does in his lifetime." 

I once had a problem and needed to cut down a fruit tree on my property. In a quandry I delayed - and the All-mighty sent me an answer -
a good bid on the house and I sold it! What a way to teach me that MITZVA! Thank you Hashem!

In this week's portion the Torah tells us to appoint uncorruptable judges. Don't we know what to do when we appoint judges?
I'm not so sure. I was once at a judicial convention (as a computer support peson)
and a judge gave a talk about his "buying a TV cheaply that was stolen off a truck". Was he being "resonsible"? 

Reading the Torah through the eyes of Rabbi Shlomo Carlebach we would see
"you need to have judges who teach and direct you to do everything with love and joy" - and we should learn from them. 
Do what you do honestly - and be happy - and make your world better that way.

Again - the words of Rabbi Carlebach:

"The most important things between my wife, my children and I are always the things I don’t have to do. 

If I don’t, it's also okay, but gevalt are they important, gevalt are they important....

Rashi says that the tora portion Eikev is talking about Mitzvos Kalos (basic mitzvas)...

You know what that means? We are talking about mitzvahs you step on, mitzvahs which I don’t have to do. 

(so) Let me ask you something. I see a poor man and I give him ten dollars, do I have to smile at him? I don’t have to. 
Let me ask you something else. When I say good Shabbos ... (to someone), where does it say that I have to say it besimcha
(with joy)? It doesn't say it anywhere."

But if we had teachers and judges who taught us that lesson - imagine what a great world
imagine what a great Shabbos
we could all have.

Love and Shabbos 

Rabbi Andy Eichenholz