Some of our primary aspirations in life are to achieve a state of inner peace and a harmonious relationship wit
h others. The main cause for all the internal tension and strife is that we are all highly complex creatures.
Mankind is comprised of a wide range of character traits. Our hearts are constantly filled with many different emotions. Often they are competing to dominate the others who are pulling in a different direction.
This dynamic is similar when we look at society at large. As our sages say, “No two minds are alike, just as no two faces are alike.” (Berachot 58a).
Life’s main challenge is how to integrate the opposing forces that are ingrained in our nature into a harmonious whole.
The good news is that we have all been endowed with a unique trait. The mystics identify this special quality as ‘Tiferet’.
No one word accurately captures its potency. It’s uniqueness lies in its ability to unify opposing forces. Words like ‘harmony’ and ‘ peace’ are used. However, these too fall short.
One can only access this trait by transcending oneself, through letting go of the grip that any particular emotion has over us. At any given moment, we must be able to create space in our hearts in order to allow this transcendent force to shine its light. This energy enables us to focus on the “Whole which is greater than the sum of its parts.” (Aristotle)
Each trait is only one component in our human psyche. In order for us to operate in a healthy manor, each emotion must have its time, place and degree of intensity.
We can only achieve this if we constantly keep our sights on a cause which is greater then ourselves. This will allow us to moderate the intensity of a particular emotion at any given time.
The same principal applies in our relationships with others, no matter with whom we interact and engage. At play are people who are different then us, whether by their personality types, character traits, or views and opinions on matters which are important to us.
We must always remember that ultimately each and every one of us is only one piece in a vast puzzle. It is both futile and foolish to exaggerate our importance and contribution to the bigger picture.
We must recognise both the strengths and weaknesses in ourselves. It is equally important to fully appreciate the unique qualities and limitations in others.
Only then are we on the right path, where we can genuinely and willingly collaborate with each and every other individual. This will enable us to achieve our collective mission of making this world a better place for all mankind.