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Terumah: Do You Believe Life Is Fair?

Why do some people have more then others? Why are some born rich whilst others are born poor? Why are some blessed with great intelligence whilst some less so? If there indeed is a design to this universe why does there seem to be so much disparity in society? Why does the world seem so unfair? In this week’s Torah portion G-d instructs Moses to “Speak to the Children of Israel and let them take for me a portion”. The Rebbe offers a counterintuitive insight which profoundly alters one’s perspective on this matter. When you give something to someone you are in fact receiving more then your are giving. In other words; the one who gives is really taking. Whilst the one who takes is really giving. Creating a world where everyone is “equal” is the simplest and easiest option. G-d could ensure that everyone was offered a “fair” share of the worlds resources and that human potential was equally distributed. Wouldn’t the world be a better place? However G-d had an even better idea. He wanted to endow mankind with the greatest gift of all. He wanted them to be G-d like. How so? He gave mankind the opportunity to give to people who don’t have. To show kindness to others who are in need of help. To make sacrifices in our own lives in order to enhance the lives of others. We all have something to give, even the “poor”. We are all in need of something, even the “rich”. Life’s about recognizing our “strengths” and sharing those with others. At the same time it is vital to acknowledge and appreciate our “weaknesses” and seek to receive from others. “Life is friendship” (Talmud Ta'anit 23a). It is about both giving and taking. In such a way where the line between the two fades. Where the giver and taker become one.

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