Posted on 08/24/2012 @ 01:41 PM
When you hear the phrase “Jewish practice,” what do you think of? Prayer, tallit, kipah, kosher, Shabbat, etc.? Many associate Jewish practice with Jewish religious ritual observance. Yet there is so much more to Jewish practice! An influential Hasidic Jew once said that everyone must have two pockets, with a note in each pocket, so that he/she can reach into one or the other, depending on the need. When feeling lowly and discouraged, one should reach into the right pocket, and find the words: "For my sake was the world created." And when feeling high and mighty, one should reach into the left pocket, and find the words: "I am but dust and ashes."
Jewish practice can also mean living a life informed by Jewish values. In this case, the Hasidic story illustrates the balance needed between the extremes of discouragement and excessive pride.
This Shabbat Message was written by Ira Dounn, Northeast Director of Jewish Enrichment