Torah.org Home Subscribe Services Support Us
 
Print Version

Email this article to a friend

Love Thy Neighbor Part 4

A key to fulfilling the command of ‘Love Thy Neighbor’ is to turn our attention to the people around us. We all have a natural tendency to think about ourselves more than other people and; consequently, we may sometimes be unaware of the needs of others. To love one’s neighbor properly it is necessary to make genuine attempts to be sensitive to their needs.

In Judaism the wisest people are also the most righteous - there are numerous examples of how leading Rabbis demonstrated their care for others. Rabbi Moshe Feinstein was the leading Rabbi in USA for many decades; on one occasion he was being taken in a car by a student. As Rabbi Feinstein entered the car the student inadvertently closed the door onto his fingers, yet he remained completely silent as if nothing had happened. A bewildered onlooker asked him why he did not cry out, he answered that the student would feel incredible embarrassment about having caused him pain and therefore he controlled himself and kept quiet.

Another example of great selflessness involves Rabbi Isser Zalman Meltzer, one of the leading Rabbis in Israel for the first part of the 20th century. His son-in-law, Rabbi Aharon Kotler and his grandson Shneur went to Rabbi Meltzer to say goodbye shortly before leaving Eretz Yisroel for Shneur’s chasunah. Rabbi Meltzer stopped in the middle of the stairs on the way down rather than escorting them all the way to the street. They asked him about it and he explained, “Many of the people who live around here have grandchildren who were murdered by the Nazis. How could I go down to the street and embrace my grandchild, flaunting my joy publicly, when these people can’t do the same?! ”

These superhuman demonstrations of selflessness can be an inspiration to us. There are numerous examples where we can overcome our own self- absorption and show an awareness of the needs of those around us. A number of commandments encourage the development of the trait of selflessness. For example, if a person finds a lost object such as a wallet lying in the street he is obligated (under certain circumstances) to pick it up, look after it and announce it in the local vicinity in an attempt to locate its owner. This command requires us to take a moment out of our own busy schedules and devote some time and effort into helping or fellow man. By striving to observe these commandments we can all become kinder people.


Text Copyright © 2007 by Rabbi Yehonasan Gefen and Torah.org


 






ARTICLES ON LECH LECHA:

View Complete List

The House that Truth Built
Rabbi Label Lam - 5762

Connoisseur's Delight
Rabbi Eliyahu Hoffmann - 5762

And Swing with All Your Might
Rabbi Label Lam - 5760

ArtScroll

The Lesson of Avraham
Rabbi Berel Wein - 5763

Jews vs. Judaism
Rabbi Yaakov Menken - 5763

Ask for Spiritual Wealth
Shlomo Katz - 5762

Looking for a Chavrusah?

No Pain, No Gain
Rabbi Yisroel Ciner - 5758

Emunah: Keeping the Faith
Rabbi Osher Chaim Levene - 5768

Mission Impassable
Rabbi Mordechai Kamenetzky - 5757

> I Too Was Struck
Rabbi Label Lam - 5768

Avraham Foreshadowed Self-Sacrifice To Make Aliyah
- 5768

A House or a Home?
Rabbi Yaakov Menken - 5757

Frumster - Orthodox Jewish Dating

Go to the Land of Canaan
Rabbi Pinchas Winston - 5770

Avraham's Strange Reaction
Rabbi Yaakov Menken - 5762

Rabbi Frand on Parshas Lech Lecha
Rabbi Yissocher Frand - 5767

Cloudy Vision
Rabbi Naftali Reich - 5768



Project Genesis

Torah.org Home


Torah Portion

Jewish Law

Ethics

Texts

Learn the Basics

Seasons

Features

TORAHAUDIO

Ask The Rabbi

Knowledge Base




Help

About Us

Contact Us



Free Book on Geulah!




Torah.org Home
Torah.org HomeCapalon.com Copyright Information