Let My People Know

Rabbi Adin Steinsaltz: “There is always a question that the individual must ask himself.”

One must acquire and internalize a certain understanding, the sense that every fleeting moment that goes by is something that never returns.

We are not talking here about a work ethic but about an inner understanding that despite everything that is being done, it is not nearly enough.

The specter of lost time should agitate him.

How can one allow himself to rest?

How can one sleep at night if the world is in such a state?

If a person is hanging by one foot on the edge of a tower, he would certainly not choose that moment to take a short nap.

We should remember that everything that is being done to correct the problems plaguing the Jewish people, to help the spiritually destitute among us, does not meet even a tiny part of the need.

What most people do is barely sufficient for their own obligations, let alone for the needs of the Jewish people. Indeed, there is much that needs to be done on this front.

When a person has an urgent feeling that he must take action in a certain way, then – even if he is not a leader but an ordinary individual who truly believes in some cause – it is impossible for his actions not to have repercussions all around him.

Even one seemingly insignificant person can create around himself a circle of faith, which then, in turn, creates another circle.

In this sense, although it often takes a great leader to instigate change, there is always a question that the individual must ask himself as well:

How should he act and how should he live in a way that is consistent with his beliefs and principles?

–Rabbi Adin Steinsaltz