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Thank you to all who see the beauty and goodness H' gives us in this world.
People are beautiful and special. I learned this from Mom when she insisted on me dating girls that I was not attracted to.
Last Mishna of Menachot. I finally learned something. I hope my Mom and Abba A"H are proud.
Be it a burnt-offering of cattle or a bird, or a meal-offering. By all of the offerings we say אשה ריח ניחוח 'A fire-offering, a pleasing aroma.' Why? 'To teach that whether one offers more or less, it is all one if he directs his mind to Heaven.' LShamaim. For Heaven.
If you have the right Kavana, it's all the same. All is holy if you have the right intent. All is pleasing to Gd if you have the right intent. This is why, when I'm binge-watching, I always have H' in mind.
Mommy always had the right intent. LShamaim.
Some People Offer Very Little
As long as their mind is directed to Heaven it is a pleasing Aroma.
Mommy treated all people the same. With respect. With dignity. With love.
As countless people shared over the Shloshim, they all felt loved by Mommy. They all felt important. I can tell you, as a member of the shul, they are not all very important people. Many of them you have to chase down for their dues. When tehy flip over the tab on the Yom Kippur appeal card, that's a good half a year of chasing. I don't know if that's what H' had in mind as 'pleasing' and 'Kavana.'
Mommy followed in H's path. She saw the pleasing aroma of all. She was a nurse. She dealt with people who smelled disgusting. Yet, she made them feel holy. She let everybody know they were loved by Gd. They were respected. She had the right Kavana. In turn, she allowed for them to have the right Kavana. LShamaim.
She Made People Feel Special
Be it her congregants, her kids, her kids' friends (how many people felt special because they had a pecan pie made for them?- chocolate chips- done right), coworkers, friends, residents at the nursing homes, aides, campers, random people taken back from the Kotel for a Friday night Seudah on their Israel visits because my father thought he knew them, people at the comedy club in Jerusalem that showed up for Karaoke, the cashier at Kohl's taking back the weekly thirty returns because Kohl's Cash will do that to you, they all felt like they were unique when Mommy interacted with them. Smiling when possible, even in the worst of times. My Mom even smiled when the mechanic charged her. That is how much good Mommy saw in people.
I have never smiled at a mechanic. The only way I have made a mechanic feel special is by allowing them to rip me off.
Everybody felt special. Everybody was special. Not greater or worse than anybody else. Everybody was respected. They were special and holy. LShamaim. They were respected as themselves by our Mother. Not judged. Loved and appreciated for who they were. A pleasant smell. A congregant who didn't help out with Kiddish.
All loved the same. All given a smile. All shared her laugh. Some people weren't even funny. But they tried. So Mommy laughed.
And somehow, they all felt special. Like they were the most important person. It was LShamaim. And now they know that everybody else was also important. That kind of kills that feeling of being special.
All of her Mitzvot done with no ego. LShamaim. It was because of her unselfish way of living that everybody felt special.
Some People Give Nothing
The different offerings cost different amounts. Some people just give a bird. You're invited over to their house expecting brisket. They give chicken for dinner. It's a letdown. Then there are those that just give you some flour. You're hoping for meat and then you find out it's vegan night, and you're eating quinoa, and you are not pleased.
The members of the shul that don't even pay their dues. Mommy made them all feel important. And the shul board resented that.
Be nice to people and shower.
Know you're special. My Mom would've treated you that way.
Treat others as if they're special, even when they are not. Let them know they're special by paying attention to them, even when they're sharing jokes you've heard before. The way you treat others is in turn the pleasing aroma you offer.
Don't have an ego. Your ego is not for Heaven. It doesn't allow you to treat others as special. The selfish ego is the lack of Kavana that does not bring a pleasing aroma to Gd. That sounds like a good rabbi message.
Beauty is in the eyes of the beholder. As Mom always taught BTaam vReiach Ein LHitvakeyach, there is no arguing with taste and smell. We all have our own taste and smell. However, we can all agree on ugly. She didn't teach that last part. I read between the lines. Why Mommy insisted I go out with that girl. I hope one day I will get over it.
If it's LShamaim, you will see the beauty in others. Though, from experience, you may not want to date them.
Do it all LShamaim. Everything Mommy did was LShamaim and with intent. And Mommy had Kavana when she Davened. There are some lessons I didn't learn. At least I shower before I pray.
***For an Aliyas Neshama for נחה בת חיים זיידאל וריבה לאה ע"ה and all the Tzadikim who made and continue to make this Olam a great life.
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Health and Healing
Humor, laughter and a positive outlook in the hard times. This includes Torah thoughts by Rabbi Kilimnick and humor from within.
With nursing facilities closed, this guy is trying to figure out why his kids are trying to break into the room, scoping it out. He's asking when his kids turned into a bunch of stalkers.
(Photo: The Guardian)