The Jewish nation is on a mission and it really is a mission from God. How wonderful that you have unique gifts to bring to the world. So what will you do with those gifts? And how will you share them? Attitude + Gifts = Light
Happiness is a really critical part of this journey in life. We are actually commanded to be happy during our holiday season. That may sound strange, how can I be commanded to be happy? How am I supposed to control my emotions like that? Shouldn't I be inspired to be happy? Shouldn't something good be happening to make me happy? This is certainly one way of thinking about happiness. There is another trend that is emerging that teaches happiness is a choice. Happiness is something you can choose. At the same time, we have a national mission so the end goal is not about our personal happiness. The Jewish mission is to be a light to the nations. Jews need to bring light to the world, on purpose with healing intentions.
Striving to fulfill the mission to be light bearers is a life time study. Every class you take or text/article you study will teach you something about:
- how to be in the world, the acts of kindness you do, taking on one more mitzva (commandment) or nuance of a mitzva
- how to refine your character, the way you relate to God, the relationships in life, and your own self including thoughts and self compassion
So what is our responsibility? What do we need to do and how do we behave as a royal?
The first thing is to know who you are in this world. That if you are a Jew, there's a reason you are a Jew and you have a unique mission within the fabric of the nation. A place to begin is by choosing something to learn: find a book or an article or a class and plug in. If you don't feel good about the place you landed, keep looking because there are so many teachers and books that there will be something or someone you resonate with for learning with joy. Here's one place to check out: http://www.partnersintorah.org/
Learning is one level and taking action in the world is another. Charity is a wonderful way to bring light into someone's world. It could be through donating money or time to an organization or helping an individual. The Talmud (Shabbos 127a) lists some precepts that bring both earthly and heavenly reward and here are a few ideas:
- Acts of kindness,
- Honoring your mother and father (oy, such happiness you'll give them!)
- Hospitality to guests (from welcoming visitors to walking them out when they leave)
- Visiting the sick (is said to take away a fraction of their illness)
- Providing for a bride (making sure a bride is happy and has what she needs to make her wedding)
- Escorting the dead (burying the dead is as far as we can escort them on their journey to the next world)
- Bringing peace between man and his fellow (helping people mend relationships)
A way of bringing light into your heart and home is literally through the simple yet deeply profound act of lighting candles for Shabbat.
The bottom line? Royalty is about being of service! It's also one of the secrets to happiness.
So, Princess, straighten your crown and stand tall as you get to the business of doing one more small thing that brings light into the world.
making an impression.
Work more on making a difference.