Friday, January 14, 2011

Do you Escape? Surrender? Fight? or Pray?

Do you Escape? Surrender? Fight? or Pray?

Moses said to the people: "Don't be afraid! Stand firm and see G-d’s salvation that He will wreak for you today, for the way you have seen the Egyptians is [only] today, [but] you shall no longer continue to see them for eternity. G-d will fight for you, but you shall remain silent...Speak to the children of Israel and let them journey fourth."
The Jews were in a dilemma. They were standing without rafts in front of the Sea. The Egyptians were fast approaching. Four factions developed, each with another plan of action:
• "Let us drown ourselves in the sea!"
• "Let us surrender and return to Egypt!"
• "Let us wage war against them!"
• "Let us pray!"
Moses replied to each group respectively:
• Stand firm and witness the deliverance that G-d will perform for you today. —Never shall you give up and forfeit your life.
• The Egyptians whom you have seen today, you will never see again. —You shall never return to Egypt.
• God will do battle for you. —You do not have to fight.
• Your shall remain silent. —Do not pray.

These four groups reflect four mistaken attitudes that we, too, are liable to adopt when hit with adversity.
Sometimes we wish to "jump into the sea," and immerse ourselves in (sometimes) something (good) and ignore our problems. Shutting our eyes, oblivious to the darkness around us.
At times we do better, saying: we will deal with the darkness, but as slaves. We resign ourselves to our fate of living in a dark world; we do our job but without hope.
Even better is when we say: we feel the power of light and aspire to conquer the darkness in our world. But is it a time to wage war?
The fourth path is the highest. With prayer we become one with G-d, losing our sense of self, and desiring only to fulfil His wishes. But alas, prayer is passive, and this, too, is not the path.
There is a time for all of these things, most definitely prayer. However, when action is called for, prayer is the wrong response. When the sea is waiting to be split, when G-d demands forward movement, it is not time to stop and worry about personal levels of connectedness.
What were they to do? Let them journey forth! – G-d commands us to journey forth. You are empowered with a divine spark, forge ahead.
There comes a point in our lives when we must "split the sea"—we must see beyond the physical trappings and recognize the hidden vitality and source of life deep within each one of us. Every person is capable of this; all that is needed is the will. Assisting someone else in this process often enables us to accomplish it for ourselves as well. This is what we are here to do at Saatchi...

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