I hope we never go back to normal. To the normal activity of taking things for granted: under-appreciating the basic items and people in our lives, the joy of meeting a friend in the street, the thrill of davening with a minyan or learning in person with a chavrusa. The pleasure of attending a meeting discussing how to help the community. The delight in attending a chasunah.
I hope we’re shell-shocked out of complacency and obliviousness. I hope we’re able to enjoy—and genuinely give thanks to Hashem for—such simplicities as breathing or being able to walk.
I hope that, contrary to what the media would have us believe, the world we return to will be a more refined one, one in which people have more patience and are more kind.
In Nevuas Yechezkel, the navi speaks of a time when the heart of stone will be replaced with a heart of flesh. Perhaps this is a preparation. The image of a self-made man who feels he’s in full control and responsible for all his success isn’t so convincing anymore. We now feel in our gut that there’s a Master to this world Who runs everything, can change everything in a blink, and with a simple mistake in one country can bring the population of the entire world to its knees.
Let us not miss this opportunity to become a much better people than we were before. Let’s let go of grudges, even the ones that started when we were 100% right! Let us embrace and respect even those who we think are entirely mistaken in their views. We can disagree with their opinions, yet never make it personal.
Let us hope this is the final challenge we needed before the time when there will be no anguish or pain. No jealousy or war. For the world will be filled with the knowledge of G-d as the ocean covers the ocean bed.
Wishing you a wonderful Shabbos and Kaballas HaTorah b’simchah u’b’pnimiyus,
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