Beauty All Around…Or Merely A Charade?

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By Rabbi Robert L. Kravitz –

School will soon be completed for the semester. The fresh grass of Spring is already “in” and growing on the golf courses. Weddings for June are planned. Summer vacations await happy participants.

The world appears great today! Joined morning and evening by the glorious sunrises and sunsets, our Valley moves along harmoniously. It’s as if no problems exist in this paradise.

Baseball games flow from opening day into pre-season football practices. Tennis balls fly free, as swimmers dive and romp in the clear, blue pools.

Maybe all this is a charade. Is it possible our world is not so pleasant, not so idyllic as the portrait just painted?

There are troubled people, hurting people, disconnected kids, broken families and difficult relationships everywhere…just under the surface; just beneath the veneer of fabulous beauty.

What to do about it? How to help make this pain go away? Where is there help?

The Scriptures teach that the answer is reachable; that we can find our help right here on earth. “Lo bah-shamayim hee,” the text says. The response is not “up there;” it is down here with us, where we can do something about it.

Look around! Listen! Offer a caring hand! This month, accept a personal challenge to make something/someone better.

There’s a word that in Hebrew is spelled the same way backward and forward; a palindrome. The word is “v’naht-nu” and it translates “and they gave.” But since the word reads both ways, it also implies that they who give, will receive.

Helping others – individuals, families, animals, our community – will redound to our benefit. It will be good for them, and ultimately will be good for us. Take time to enjoy our local beauty. Revel in joyous celebrations! And remember “v’naht-nu” while offering your caring hand. You’ll feel great!

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