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Shelach: - The Living Should Take It To Heart

Instead of writing a weekly insight derived from the current Torah portion I thought it would be more fitting to address a most tragic event that has befallen our community.

A middle aged man, beloved father, dear husband, tragically drowned whilst on holiday in Mexico. No words can describe the shock, pain and grief that the family is currently enduring. May Hashem comfort them all. May all the family no longer know any pain and suffering.

The devastating impact that this tragic untimely passing has had on the community has been most profound.

In these circumstances our only response as Jews is silence and acceptance of G-d’s mysterious ways.

I would just like to share with you a most inspiring insight which I once heard in the name of the Lubavitcher Rebbe.

Upon the passing of the soul from this earth it is customary to recite the Kaddish. The prayer begins with the words “Yitgadal Ve-Yitkadash Shemei Rabbah” (May the great Name of G-d be exalted and sanctified).

The Rebbe asks, what is the connection between the passing of a soul from this world and the reciting of this prayer?

The Rebbe explains that each person’s soul is a “lamp of G-d”. Consequently when a soul departs from this world, G-d’s light is diminished. It is therefore incumbent upon the living to increase their own light in order to compensate for the light that has been lost.

All those who know him will never forget his radiance and warmth. Filled with good energy and humor he made you feel better.

It is now up to us to fill that great void in our lives and beyond. We do this by shining our own light in increasing measure. This is done by being extra warm and gracious to others. By thinking less of ourselves and more of others. By showing empathy to all those whom we meet, especially strangers. By doing random acts of kindness.

Inspired by this special man who was filled with positive energy, we are all no doubt empowered to shine a greater measure of light and warmth into this dark world. For in effect,our light is his light.

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