by Karen Berg
There is a kabbalistic story about a righteous person who had many students. One day, one of the students came to this teacher and said, “I don’t think I can be here anymore. I have so many questions, so many things that I don’t understand. I simply can’t follow this path any longer. I want to give up.”
Calmly and simply, the kabbalist responded, “Did these questions come to you before or after you decided this wasn’t your path?”
The student thought for a moment and said, “You know…yes, you’re right. I got the questions after I decided. What about it?”
“Well,” the kabbalist replied, “it seems you don’t have questions. You have answers.”
Oftentimes, when we look at other people—our friends, our spouse, our siblings, even our acquaintances—we don’t have questions; we have answers. Armed with our preconceptions and judgments, we close the door of our heart to others instead of leaving it open for them to walk through.
Many times, we don’t step back so we can appreciate those around us. Perhaps their values are different than ours. Perhaps they have a different lifestyle than we do. Nevertheless, it is our job to accept them—just as they are—as part of our life. Why? Because the moment we decide to judge how another person lives, then we put ourselves in the role of the Creator. And we are not the Creator. No one is.
The Bible says that Moses asked to see the face of God, and God said, “You cannot see My face. But I will show you My back.” What does this mean? Essentially, the Creator was reminding Moses that as humans, we do not see the whole picture; we see only what the Creator chooses to reveal to us.
It’s true. When we look at another person, we don’t know how many lifetimes he has lived or what he has done. We don’t know why he was put in the vessel where he now exists, nor do we know what his tomorrow will be. We see only the limited view of this moment, this snapshot in time, so we cannot judge. There are lifetimes of experiences and information invisible to us as well as a future of possibilities that we can’t anticipate.
As we head into the coming holidays, we need to remember that if we want to connect to the full energy available, then we need to be prepared to come with questions rather than answers. We need to prepare ourselves to be open to the likelihood of a new experience and to see ourselves as minute in the world of the Light. Why? Because in reality, the only way that you and I and all of us can become somebody is when we come to understand that we are nobody. In the world of the Light, whatever our position, our honor, or our possessions, everything can change in two seconds. That is why it is so important that we all bear the mark of appreciation.
As human beings, we generally see the cup as half empty: We look at people and immediately judge them for their faults. Most of us don’t automatically turn to another human being and say, “Wow, how wonderful you are!” We usually start by finding faults, those places that seem dark to us.
This week, however, we can make a different choice. We can go forward with appreciation for everything and everyone in our lives, and with this energy, we can open up the door of miracles.