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Seven Teachings by Hillel

Published on Thursday April 1st, 2021

Hillel said:

Be vigilant until the end of your life. (The evil inclination never ceases trying to trick people. Often, an aging person thinks that because he is old he has nothing to fear. But, as the tzaddikim explained, the evil inclination can make anyone feel young again and lead him to temptation. Thus, everyone must be scrupulous and avoid these common mistakes, even the tzaddikim and the elderly. More so, when one is regularly tempted by forbidden desires; he must flee the fault immediately!)

Do not judge your friend before walking in his shoes. (Men often fail to empathize with the feelings of others. You must keep in mind that everyone reacts, thinks and perceives things differently. We must never judge another person because we may have behaved similarly if we shared their fate.)

Do not procrastinate acting on your good decisions. (It is the worst trap to fall into. Indeed, each one of us receives, depending on his merit, lesser or louder calls to do Teshuvah. The problem is that the evil inclination tells us to wait until tomorrow. No! We must take a clear stand and start right now. Not a minute later! Thus, we will always conquer the evil inclination, Amen!)

You have to study a lot of Torah to fear Hashem as prescribed. (Indeed, loving and fearing Hashem, while remaining an ignoramus regarding His mitzvot is self-defeating. There are lurking dangers hovering around those who do not know the Torah, even if they manifest great power of the will. It is necessary to study as much Torah as possible, and to learn the laws and commandments scrupulously. Let's not forget that, to remember the laws, it is necessary to revise them regularly.)

You must not be embarrassed to learn. (Do not hesitate to ask the Rabbanim questions, whatever your questions are! The Talmud tells us that King David consulted his Rav on all questions whenever in doubt, and that he deserved having a righteous and wise son!)

Whoever wants to be wise should avoid using all his strength on work matters and career. (There is no point chasing after money to later bequeath it to others. It is far more advisable to run after the Torah. So let's earn whatever we need to live on and utilize the rest of our time studying the holy Torah! And if we earn more than we need, let’s invest this money to gain future rewards and give it out to Tzedakah and towards increasing the practice of mitzvot!)

Whenever you are in a place where nobody else is trying to do the right thing, be brave, step forward and do it. Instead of following the crowd senselessly, let's follow the truth! In this way, we will merit enabling others discover what is true and what is valuable in life.  

Rav Emmanuel MIMRAN - © Torah-Box Account

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