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Rabbi's Message - June 2022 - How To Make A Connection?

Dear Friends,

In a world of global imaging, conferencing,

and texting we can often feel a

split, a severe or even disconnection.

We check our technology, and sometimes

we even blame the service provider or technician,

for our technology not working properly. If we think about

it for a moment; it is all about “being connected.”

We know that the Hebrew word “Shalom” means

“peace”, but we may not know, that it comes from the root

“Shalem”, meaning whole or united (by the way; one of

G-d’s names is Shalom, Talmud Shabbat 10b). In other

words, we must be united, connected to one another, to

find peace, make peace, or even pursue peace in our

lives. We must reach out to others’ needs and listen more

to their stories, rather than only talking about our own

problems. We must stretch ourselves a little bit more for

the other person in his/her struggle or time of suffering, in

order to help make things right. In our busy world, we

need to connect with others, especially in our family, and

our community, in order to make our surroundings and our

behaviors more “peaceful”. As Rabbi Menachem Mendel

Schneerson zt”l teaches this idea, through a Kabbalistic

lens in his book, ‘Toward a Meaningful Life,’ and I quote,

“And yet this is precisely what G-d wants: that our ‘dark’

and ‘lowly’ world obscure its connection to the divine, so

that man, out of his/her own free will, would choose to peel

back the successive layers of the container to reveal the

light. And to facilitate that process, G-d created different

steps along the way, a ladder by which man can climb ever

upward and unite with his/her Creator. A man visited a

rabbi to complain how difficult his life was, with problems

at home and work. He said that no matter how hard he

tried to work out these problems, he made no progress.

The rabbi suggested that the Biblical verse about

Jacob’s dream would provide an answer. He

explained, ‘Jacob dreamed that a ladder was standing

upon the ground and its top reached up toward heaven.

G-d’s angels were ascending and descending on

it. Suddenly, Jacob saw G-d standing over him… and

G-d said, ‘I am with you.’ (Genesis 28:12, 13, 15). The

rabbi paused and looked at the man. “Why were the

angels first going upward and then downward, when

angels come from heaven? he asked. ‘Because a person

must first build a ladder climbing upward from

his/her material life toward spirituality. Then his/her

actions sanctify his/her entire life, creating ‘angels’

that climb upward. And when they return downward,

G-d will appear with them and respond to your

prayers.” (adapted by Rabbi Simon Jacobson, Chapter

26 on “Unity” page 242, Wm. Morrow & Co. Inc. NY)

May G-d accept our prayers for those who are suffering,

by keeping this idea in our thoughts, minds and actions, as

we too, make a “peaceful” connection with someone

in our lives.

If anyone knows of someone who is ill or has

passed or is in some other need please call or

email me directly so that I can make contact with

them. My number is 305-338-3029 and my email is

Rabbi Schonblum

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