To close out the year I want to share some of my philosophy about life. As I write this, I am still in the seven-day mourning period (Shiva) of my father’s death. He went peacefully in his sleep after an extraordinary life spanning 89 years. He and I shared, among many things, a deep spiritual bond – believing in Tikkun or our divine mission to contribute to the betterment of our world. He lived by what the prophet Micah said, “All that God asks of you is to be just, love mercy and walk humbly with your Lord,” and taught me to reciprocate the blessings bestowed upon me.
Rabbi Larry Kushner wrote:
There must have been a time when you entered a room and met someone and after a while you understood that you had changed the other or he had changed you. By some word or deed or just by your presence the errand had been completed. Then perhaps you were a little bewildered or humbled and grateful. And it was over.
Some seem to be born with a nearly complete puzzle. And so it goes. Souls going this way and that; trying to assemble the myriad of parts.
But know this. No one has within themselves all the pieces to their puzzle. Like before the days when they used to seal jigsaw puzzles in cellophane. Insuring that all the pieces were there.
Everyone carries with them at least one and probably many pieces to someone else’s puzzle. Sometimes they know it, sometimes they don’t.
And when you present your piece which is worthless to you, to another, whether you know it or not, you are a messenger from the Most High.
Interpret this as you wish, however I believe it means all our lives are intertwined and that we each influence the other somehow – even in the smallest of ways. Think about the last time you impacted another, whether through a touch, a smile, a kind word or deed, or simply by being in the same room. How did that make the other person feel? How did it make you feel?
As 2018 ends and you close one chapter to begin another in 2019, I urge you to reflect on how your actions or deeds impact the world for the better as well as what can you do next year to achieve even more. It is within each of us to be active participants in leaving this world better than when we entered. Count your blessings, share them, and live fulfilled. Be the change you wish to see in our world.
“He who saves a single life saves the entire world.” – Talmud
Be Present | Be Purposeful | Be Well