Sunday, August 12, 2012

Is The Glass Half Empty Or Full-Parashat Re'eh

Parshat Re'eh continues with Moses' second sermon to the Israelite people. It begins with the statement, "See, re'eh, this day I set before you a blessing and a curse" - a blessing if the people obey God's commandments and a curse, if they choose to disobey.

Strange that it doesn’t begin with the word “Sh’ma” or “Listen”, like it usually does at the beginning of a list of instructions. Like “Listen Up”.  Instead, this parashat begins with the word “Re’eh”, or “See”. Re’eh teaches us that each day we have the opportunity to choose. We have the choice to see the glass half empty or half full. 
The Torah presents the blessings and curses as choices, saying that each one of us must “See” for ourselves which ones follow.
 Deuteronomy is in essence a review of where we have been. It asks us to examine our past actions, and then look ahead to the future. It requires us to have a vision, the ability to “see” with all of our being in order to discern the blessings from the curses. As we get ready to enter the Land, we need to open our eyes and our hearts to the possibilities that lie ahead, learning from the mistakes that we made along the way.
The gift of Free Will definitely carries some problems with it. The onus is now on us to try our best to make the right decision.
Every day is a day of choices, and the key to making these choices is being able to understand all of the options before us.

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