18 Tamuz 5779 / Sunday, July 21, 2019 | Torah Reading: mattot
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The Fearless Trio    

The Fearless Trio

When we view the deeper significance of our challenges as positive growth opportunities, we learn that Hashem orchestrates the minutest details of our lives for the very best…


Some of our greatest challenges occur when we misinterpret or misunderstand concepts. So let’s begin with fearlessness which, in this context, refers to spiritual courage to rise to our full potential.


Fearlessness is a deep feeling of empowerment and encouragement that derives from knowing G-d is with us, orchestrating the details of our lives for the very best, and also from maximizing three aspects of our relationship with the Creator: mindfulness, emuna, and spiritual awareness. These three attributes comprise the Fearless Trio. They create the momentum to move us forward from inspiration to inspired action. It is inspired action that results in positive changes when we commit to doing our part.


So how do we define each component of the Fearless Trio and, even more importantly, how do we implement all three aspects into our daily lives? First, let’s consider mindfulness. My favorite example of Hashem’s mindfulness of His children is contained in Psalm 8, in which King David recounts:


“When I behold Your heavens, the work of Your fingers, the moon and the stars which You have set in place, what is man that You should remember him?”


As King David reflected upon the awesome greatness and omniscience of Hashem, he also pondered how mindful the Almighty is of each of us---how much He cares for every one of His creations even though His power is so awesome and unlimited. Because Hashem is mindful of each of us and desires a personal relationship with us, it is fitting and proper for us to be mindful of Him. Placing Hashem before us always means to make Him a part of every decision we make, every endeavor or interaction in which we participate, and every word we speak. When we make Him a part of our lives by praying to Him, speaking to Him daily, blessing the food we eat and the activities He brings our way, and engaging in His mitzvos (commandments), we connect to Him and demonstrate how mindful we are of Him.


Emuna, the First Commandment and a component of the Fearless Trio, means to know there is a G-d, not just profess to believe in Him. To get to know anything with any degree of understanding takes effort on our part.  A relationship that is real and honest leaves behind all superficiality. Anochi Hashem Elokecha - “I am G-d your G-d” is the commandment of Emuna—of faith---from which emanates the 248 positive commandments of the Torah. On the second set of tablets relating to our fellow man parallel to the first commandment of emuna is the sixth commandment, which is “not to murder”.


There is a clear correspondence between the first and sixth commandments: If anyone refuses to believe with complete faith in the one G-d, in His goodness and kindness, and in His complete dominion over all of creation, then this translates to heresy (apikaros)---as though we were committing murder, chas v’shalom (G-d forbid). So strong is G-d’s command and desire that we have faith in Him, get to know Him for our own good, and get close to Him that He likens the complete opposite of emuna to murder. We demonstrate our emuna by way of developing positive character traits, learning and practicing the lessons imbued within the Torah, prayer, and speaking to Hashem in our own words (hisbodedus). The greater the effort we put into becoming the highest version of ourselves and moving closer to the Creator, the more we become living examples of emuna.


Rabbi Brody discusses the significance of spiritual awareness in the Trail to Tranquility. When we “see” Hashem’s hand in our personal lives, He gives us the opportunity to experience the truth firsthand. When we open our “spiritual eyes” and view the deeper significance of our challenges as positive growth opportunities, we learn that Hashem orchestrates the minutest details of our lives for the best. He sends us messages on a regular basis. We become cognizant of Hashem’s presence when we are able to trace synchronicities back to Him as when we see His number (26) appear in our daily lives.


When we are tempted by the yetzer hara to think that what occurs is a random coincidence, we must valiantly push away that  falsehood and remind ourselves of the truth----that there are no accidents, no coincidences, and no mistakes. Then we open ourselves up to the truth of G-d’s involvement in our lives. We become spiritually aware that there is a positive purpose to whatever Hashem sends our way. Spiritual awareness creates meaning and happiness in our lives. We begin to appreciate that Hashem uses both His rod and His staff to guide and comfort us.


Each of us plays a role in recognizing Hashem and living in alignment with His mandates.. When we do our part in developing a close relationship with the Creator, we fulfill the acronym formed by the word P.A.R.T., which is .Praise, Ask, Return, and Thank. These actions are natural expressions of gratitude for all that Hashem does for us. May we become fearless spiritual warriors and have the courage to share with others the ways to get closer to the Creator through Mindfulness, Emuna, and Spiritual Awareness.

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