Friday, July 25, 2008

From my Inbox - The Power of the Few

Here is the tail end of a correspondence from a concerned reader:

By the way, I get really upset about how it looks that the 7b are by far the majority and we are just headed for camp Klala no matter how hard we try individually to improve ourselves. Can you tell me your perspective on this scenario? only give it to me nicely so it won't make me depressed. Thank you.

To follow is my response:

The staus of "Im Bechukosai Telechu" does not come easy. It takes conviction, commitment, discipline, "bitul hayesh" and TOIL (ameilus). Remember that I wrote that being there is only the first step toward our real goal (top of Mt. neverest) and I noted (page 192) that the legend is that even the Gaon of Vilna only attained 4 or 5 levels. So, obviously there is not going to be too big a crowd (maybe that's why mountains are narrower at the top). Also, just like I wrote on page 257 that there are no guardrails between one level to the next in the 7B but there is also no guardrail between the 1A to the 7B, so we are all fighting against the "force of gravity".

I am afraid that this much will indeed make you depressed. So, here's the bright side (and it's on page 93) - The value (or influence) of virtue is at least 500 times greater than the value (influence) of misbehavior. So, on the "great ship" each person who has a ticket to camp Bracha has 500 votes against each person who holds a ticket to Camp Kelala so even if they are outnumbered by 500-1, they can still turn the whole ship around (just like 50 tzaddikim could have saved Sodom).


Y. Hirshman

Good Shabbos!!

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