Perek Shira: Wellsprings – Rav Hutner On The Power Of Originality
The Kotzker Rebbe once said that if you serve Hashem today the same way you served him yesterday, then you are a fraud and a copycat. What is the difference, he asked, between copying someone else or copying yourself? A person must grow everyday and his avodah must be a product of the person he has come to be up until this moment. It needs to be fresh and inspired and not same old, same old.
This is the lesson of the fresh spring. Its waters do not ever stop flowing. Each moment brings forth new water, not recycled from the ocean or from itself. The BiSoraso Yehgeh quotes a letter from Rav Yitzchok Hutner, the Rosh Yeshiva of Rabbeinu Chaim Berlin, who says that we learn the power of originality from the spring. In order to purify something in standing water, the water needs to be 40 Sa’ah. However if you purify something in spring water there is no shiur. The smallest amount can purify. This is power of originality, says Rav Hutner.
The wellsprings sing, “V’Sharim Ki’Cholalim Kol Mayanai Bach” (Tehilim 87:7) Mayanai means not only “wellsprings” but also “my insides”, which is how Rashi explains this pasuk. Shira to Hashem must come from deep within you. Everyday life brings you new experiences and opportunities for growth. You need to internalize them and produce a new original song, clean and crisp like the fresh running waters.
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