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Mesillas Yesharim 05/24/09

After a wonderful Rosh Chodesh morning services we began our weekly foray into the depths of Ramchal’s Mesillas Yesharim.

Last week we began to learn about the detriment of scoffing or sarcasm to out spiritual growth. The general principle is that one who is incapable of seriousness about life will not be able grow spiritually. This week I had planned on completing Chapter 5 in its entirety.

However, we got no further in the text of Mesillas Yesharim this week.

Instead we had a truly invigorating discussion ab0ut “seriousness”. It is tough for us to relate to this section Mesilas Yesharim. We are allowed to make jokes, frivoility is not ALWAYS bad, so how can we bring this section down to earth and make is relevant?

One example that I cited for a moment as we began class was the way observant Jews typically dress. Have you ever wondered why observant Jews dress conservatively for the most part or wear “black and white”?

Much of what we talk about was related to this post, as well as these two posts and this post as well.

Click to listen to our discussion. It was very interesting and enlightening. Read the rest of this entry »

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How To Avoid “Holier-Than-Thou” Syndrome

I saw a very interesting column in the New York Times today.

The column presents some evidence that a large chasm exists between what an individual will claim they would do in a given situation and what one would actually do in that given situation.

In other words our actions betray our feelings of righteousness. (How funny is it that the columnist’s named is Benedict? well, it made me smile…).

As I was reading the article, which I highly recommend I kept thinking: Why is this idea so natural to me? Where else have I seen this?

The answer was really obvious.

Read the rest of this entry »

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