In the last few weeks more than one person I know has passed away. As is always the case when I experience a loss, I contemplate the meaning of life and why things happen. None of us really knows for sure what happens after death. While the various religions of the world have an assortment of beliefs as to an afterlife, and the non-religious folks who believe death is the end and that nothing further exists beyond that, no one really knows for sure what happens after death because no one has died and come back and if they have, they really never died to begin with.
So what’s the point? Why do we belabor and debate over meaningless things, have ridiculous quips and quarrels, work so unbelievably hard, and spend very little time enjoying our families and life in general? I think it’s because of the “me first” flaw that each of us has. It seems like life to most people is always about getting the new car, a bigger house, the fanciest shoes, and me me me. We all see it and we are all guilty of it to an extent (some more than others) but for whatever reason we all continue to immerse ourselves in self-serving ways.
Is there a way to stop this? Yes, but it isn’t easy. Put the Almighty first, others second, and yourself last.
Regardless of ones religious beliefs there can be very little argument as to the influence that Mosaic law has had on the civilized world and the origin of Mosaic law is – the Torah. The Torah outlines in great detail how to lead a moral, social, and community focused life. Granted some of the laws are a bit outdated but, the bulk of them are still very relevant and if followed would solve the “me” problem. For those who are opposed to any form of form of biblical reference and would rather yield to their sense of reason – well you can reason yourself to death if you have no structure on which to base your sense of reasoning. For Christians who like to use the term “Christian values” I would have to ask them exactly what those values are as the focus of Christianity is not on performing good deeds but, on their own salvation (there is that me problem again). The irony of Christianity is that it is the belief in a man who, ironically, vehemently spoke of performing good deeds (mostly in parables). Good deeds that have their origin in the Torah.
All of the Mosaic laws can be summed up in one sentence “Love God and love your neighbor as yourself.” Did I just contradict myself? To love your neighbor as yourself would require someone to love themself right? The whole me issue again right? Well kinda but, you can flip the sentence into “Don’t do something to someone you wouldn’t want done to you.” While this may seem to have a completely different meaning, it’s really saying the same thing.
I have said that nature and the creation is perfect. It’s not perfect as is though, it just has everything needed to be perfect.
What would the world be like without man?
What would the world be like without water?
What would the world be like without air?
What would the world be like without the fish in the sea and the fowls of the air?
When taken individually none of these creations are perfect in and of themselves. However as a collective whole they achieve balance. Man is not complete without a woman. Darkness isn’t dark if there is no light. Love can not exist without emotion. The creation was designed to be perfect but, it is up to mankind to fulfill the divine plan.
How does someone fulfill their portion of the divine plan? Simple. Put the Almighty first, others second, and yourself last.
© Nelson Rose, The Quest for Light