Monday, April 28, 2014

Iyar: Helping others and not causing them distress

Dear Friends,

This is a post about the Jewish month of Iyar, as it relates to The Chazak Plan: A 12 Month Journey to Spiritual Strength.

Rosh Chodesh Iyar is on April 30th and May 1st.

During this month occurs the period known as The Omer. During part of The Omer, we commemorate thousands of Rabbi Akiva’s students who died in a plague. The Talmud teaches that the plague occurred because the students did not treat each other with proper respect.

To strengthen ourselves in this key area of treating others well, each day during this month, check off on your checklist if you did an act of kindness that day. If you didn’t yet, ask yourself if there is someone you can call or email, who would appreciate that you reached out to them. At the very least, put some money in a box designated for charity. Don’t let a day go by without doing something for someone else. As the Sages teach, (Pirkei Avot 1:14), “…If I am [only] for myself, what am I?”

In addition, at the end of the day, review your day and consider if you may have caused someone distress, by what you said or did. If yes, commit to apologize to them as soon as possible.

The reading for this month is an action plan containing key points found throughout this book which will help us live a more fulfilling life. Anyone can benefit from this plan, regardless of their affiliation.

The plan starts off with a simple test to help you determine if you are on track to living a meaningful and fulfilling life. The plan will help you prepare for next month, when we celebrate receiving on Mount Sinai the Torah, God’s instruction manual for life. Choose one suggestion from the action plan and add it to your checklist.

Reading for the month:

How to Live a Fulfilling Life: An Action Plan

Take care and may God grant you success in the coming month,


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