'What are you doing for Jewish life in Cambridge?': A Tribute To Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks
There are moments in our lives when we are profoundly challenged.
As we journey on the path we have set for ourselves we suddenly realize something is wrong.
A moment which challenges us to see life through a new light.
A paradigm shift which compels us to change direction.
Perhaps it is an extraordinary event. Or possibly an encounter with a great man.
In 1968 a young Cambridge University student met the Rebbe. He had many questions for which he sought the Rebbe’s answers.
When he finished the Rebbe said, I would like to ask you a question.
“What are you doing for Jewish life in Cambridge?”
The student stammered, he began to say “Well, the situation in which I find myself”.
The Rebbe interrupted him and said “No one ever finds himself in a situation. You put yourself in a situation. And if you put yourself in one situation, you can put yourself in a different situation.”
The student was profoundly impacted by this and other subsequent encounters with the Rebbe.
With the Rebbe’s continued guidance and blessings the young man eventually relinquished his childhood dream of becoming a professor or a barrister.
Instead he chose to teach and inspire his people.
The student’s name was Jonathan Sacks - now universally known as Rabbi Lord Sacks.
He sadly passed away a few days ago.
Rabbi Sacks was unique in his ability to distill timeless Jewish teachings in a way which profoundly resonated with the masses.
No doubt his wide range of erudition will continue to illuminate and inspire the Jewish world and beyond.
“We the living should take it to heart”.
Let us not forget the trigger that set this young student on his path.
It is the question which each and every one of us should ask ourselves. “In whatever situation we find ourselves”.
“What are we doing for the Jews
in our community?”
Dedicated by Gabriela Dubiago
In memory of Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks of Blessed Memory