This Week’s Article
By Rabbi Avraham Tzvi Schwartz
We live in three worlds, the world of things, the world of people, and the world of concepts.
The world of things is made of buildings, homes, gardens, furniture, cars, clothing, food and drink, etc. The world of people is composed of family, friends, neighbors, workmates, teachers, people who buy from us or sell to us, people we see, people we meet, etc. The world of concepts is the most complex of the three. At one level, it is made of research, exploration, scientific discovery; at another, of social justice, truth and peace; at yet another, of love, awe, joy, etc.
We all live in all three worlds. The question is though, which for us is our main world? In other words, in which of our worlds do we invest our main thrust?
… or Life
That which is material dies — if not today, then tomorrow. That which is spiritual lives beyond this world; it is eternal, timeless.
Every element in this world is composed of the material and the spiritual. The spiritual is the soul, the life-force of the material being. When we use the elements of this world for a higher cause, we attach ourselves to its spirit and make it a part of our higher selves. We gain for ourselves a share in its life-force.
If however, we use this world purely for physical gratification, we embed our own spirituality into that which is material. This damages us, as well as our world.
A Hidden Hunger
We each have a hidden hunger. We may try to suppress it, but this doesn’t make the hunger disappear. The only way is to try to satisfy it.
Material riches cannot satisfy this hunger. On the contrary, they irritate it, much like the thirsty person who drinks seawater. We have to turn to — link ourselves with — the Source of life. Only then can we begin to satisfy this need.
A 10-yr old has no wish again to be the age of five. An adult has no interest in returning to his childhood. Similarly, one who connects and tastes life in a higher realm will never view his life in the same way again.
We come into this world as guests. This world is not our own. As such, we need to behave ourselves. The hotel, which we so enjoy, has rules. The management may keep a low profile, but they enforce their rules strictly and with precision. They reward us when we behave as we should. They punish us for misbehaving.
To improve our lives, to promote our self-growth, we need to learn and know these rules. Then we will avoid doing what we shouldn’t be doing, and instead, do what we need to do. We will stay away from the words that shouldn’t be said, and instead say what we need to say. We will stop thinking thoughts that harm us, and instead generate thoughts that bring goodness into our lives.
To sweeten our lives we must learn the formula; then, do our best to keep to it.
Author, Rabbi Avraham Tzvi Schwartz.
All rights reserved (c) Avraham Tzvi Schwartz