Learning from every man

It is rather scary at times how the everyday vort on Growing Each Day at Aish.com corresponds directly to my daily life – admonishing me right on the point where I need it most on a certain day. Today’s vort is regarding learning how to say “I don’t know” and being sensitive enough to recognize the lessons one can learn from even people whom we know are inferior to us in various aspects. There was once a rabbi who witnessed a thievery and forced himself to learn 7 things from the thief, even though spiritually and morally, he is obviously more superior than the latter. The following are what Rabbi Zusya of Anipoli learned from the thief (excerpt from Chabad.org):

  1. what he does, he keeps to himself
  2. he is ready to take risks in order to achieve his goal
  3. the smallest detail is of great importance to him
  4. he invests great effort and toil in what he does
  5. he is swift
  6. he is confident and optimistic
  7. if at first he fails, he is back time and again for another try.

If we come to think of it, it really takes a truly wise person, a person who is more superior in perception and insight to be able to learn from – to sieve out the fundamentals, to dig the gems out of – even the most despicable of people and darkest events that transpire around him, and then, avoiding the pitfall of merely pointing fingers which people tend to always do, to map the lessons back on himself for the further refinement of his own person. Ironic, isn’t it?

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~ by musafiremes on April 24, 2007.

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