2 Heshvan 5767, October 24, 2006

The following lesson is hinting to things very shortly to become manifest... So, pay attention, open up and allow HaShem to speak His Words of Living Torah directly into your mind and heart...

My Neighbor
By HaRav Ariel Bar Tzadok. Copyright (C) 2006 by Ariel Bar Tzadok. All rights reserved.


There are some things that I deeply believe are absolute and evident truths. Yet, there are other things that others believe to be equally true. Sometimes we agree and sometimes we do not. How can truth not be true for everyone? How can truth mean one thing for me and something entirely different for my neighbor? Is there not one underlying reality for us all?

As I look out upon life, I have pondered long and hard until things make sense to me. Then along comes my neighbor and offers me a conflicting picture of reality. My neighbor claims that he too has pondered life for as long and as deep as have I. Why then has he come to such glaringly opposite conclusions and convictions?

I contemplate the universe and my neighbor contemplates the universe. Yet, we each see different things. It is as if we see, ponder and comprehend different universes. How can we be so similar in so many ways and yet at the same time see life, the universe and everything so differently?

I pondered this in silence, contemplated long and hard, and it dawned on me. The reason why my neighbor sees things so differently from me is because of his personal flaws and lack of insight. Indeed, if my neighbor were as wise as I, he would come to the same conclusions about things, as I have.

I shared this revelation with my neighbor and he agreed with me completely. He said how he too had contemplated in silence long and hard and came to the same conclusions, as did I. Only he said it was I who was mistaken and that it was he who had true insight.

We both concluded that silence did not solve our differences. The more we were silent the further away from one another we grew. So, instead of remaining quite, we began to speak to one another. At first, our conversation was heated and argumentative, we were each convinced of our personal truths and insisted that the other stop talking and instead listen. This argument continued for some time. Yet, as time passed, so too did our resistance to truly listen. Indeed, we each began to hear words of truth from the mouth of the other.

This intrigued me, so I decided to listen in earnest. I was surprised to hear that my neighbor’s views were not so different from my own. Indeed, even in those areas in which we sharply disagreed, we both discovered that our differences were more an expression of our personal perspectives. Each of us approach a thing from a different direction, we each view the same truth, but from different sides.

I came to appreciate the view of my neighbor and he came to appreciate mine. Indeed, he taught me about aspects of truth that I did not know and could not see. I in turn did the same for him. It is good that we communicated. For when we began to listen, we began to learn. We both benefited a great deal from this and grew ever closer. I wish others could follow our example.


Shalom, Ariel Bar Tzadok

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