9/11 and How to Effect Permanent Change

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7 Responses

  1. Mark says:

    Thanks for the thoughts. Could it be that the reason we don’t change is that we are not using an effective feedback mechanism – ie cheshbon hanefesh. The Mesillas Yesharim makes a pretty strong case that it is a critical component of growth, but informal surveys I’ve done with mussar-oriented individuals reveals that almost nobody is doing it regularly.

    What has been your experience with Cheshbon Hanefesh?

  2. micha says:

    I wrote about Cheshbon haNefesh in the past. I agree that it is critical. See this Bakeish Shalom column, and my “ad” for keeping a cheshbon

    As for doing it regularly, I usually last about a couple of months, lose it, pick it up a few months or a half year later, and repeat the cycle.

  3. Mark says:

    Thanks Rabbi Berger. If Cheshbon Hanefesh (CH) is critical and even those strongly committed to Mussar like yourself have difficulty keeping it up , where can we go from there? Perhaps by finding CH alternatives or find a more compliance producing way of doing CH.

    In you ad for keeping a cheshbon you say: “Man has three primary relationships: mitzvos between himself and other people, mitzvos between himself and the Omnipresent, and mitzvos between himself and his [own] soul. The first two categories are classical, the third was first articulated by Rav Yisrael.”

    Do you think the Maharal was making a similiar point in his commentary to the second Mishna in Avos when he states:

    “In order to attain this tov, fulfilling his purpose and potential, he must perfect three different facets of his existence.

    He must fulfill his potential in relation to himself, as a uniquely human creation. He must fulfill his potential in relation to his Creator, implementing the will of G-d who brought him into existence. And he must fulfill his potential in relation to his fellow man, fulfilling his responsibilities to the people with whom G-d surrounded him. ”

    See
    http://www.torah.org/learning/maharal/p1m2part1.html

  4. Anonymous says:

    The “vort” is not from the Satmar Rav it is from his grandfather the “Yismach Moshe”.

    The related vort that is from the Satmar Rebbe is his using this idea to explain the end of the kedushah (in nusach sefard) of mussaf which states “Heyn Ga’alti Eschem Acharis KeReishis” – when will G-d bring the redemption – when we are successful in making the end of the year into what we had aspired to in the begining; wen we make the “Acharis” – “Kireishis”.

  5. micha says:

    Anonymous: Thanks. I looked into it, and updated the entry accordingly.

    Mark: You’re looking at the glass as mostly empty. Instead, look what we can gain from just that little bit of water. Think of the value of keeping a cheshbon even if it were just for Elul!

    I think we would get more compliance if we had better social pressure. IOW, if one didn’t feel like they were going it alone, there would be more drive to do it.

    I also think that the excercise in introspection has value even during the periods I don’t keep up with it. Learning how to watch what you’re doing creeps into how you experience the interaction itself as it’s happening.

    -mi

  6. Anonymous says:

    Could also be due to the straightforward Jewish/Torah concept that “the one who has the greater incentive will invariably take the initiative” 😉

    Could it be that the reason we don’t change is that we are not using an effective feedback mechanism – ie cheshbon hanefesh. The Mesillas Yesharim makes a pretty strong case that it is a critical component of growth, but informal surveys I’ve done with mussar-oriented individuals reveals that almost nobody is doing it regularly.

  7. micha says:

    I think you’ve pointed to the need for a va’ad. With a peer group in which behaviors like keeping a cheshbon, making qabalos, and learning behispa’alus are the norm, it would be easier to keep them going. Recovering alcoholics in AA use each other for support, check up on each other, call someone when they have a moment of weakness. Are we any less wise?

And your thoughts...?

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