Right before Shabbos, my children found a whole bag of … I don't know what. Little figurines and whatnot.
As they were going through the toys, my wife, who was in the middle of davening, heard my 10-year-old daughter say, "Oh! I think I know who this is! I think he's called 'Man Bat.'"
Man Bat?! Israelis….
Yet another reminder of the joys of having kids who are so "out of it."
The Chofetz Chaim once asked, why is it that there are some big rabbanim making errors in their judgements about certain outlooks in life? (For those who know what he's referring to, good for you. For those who do not know, well, it's too much of a subject to get into at this point, but it's not important for this Dvar Torah.)
To answer his question, he gave an example of a woodworker who needed to glue two beams of wood together. He had a problem though. One beam of wood had a piece of wood sticking out, making it impossible to glue to the second beam. So, he has two choices. One, he shaves off the piece of wood, making the beam smooth. The second option is that he creates a hole in the second beam of wood, to match the piece, so it will slide perfectly in.
There are times that we get "shtuyot" (stupid things) in our heads. And I don't mean an annoying song. I mean ideas that are not Torah-based, but we really believe in. One example that popped up in my head is the notion of love and romance which is portrayed in movies and television. We have no idea how many millions of homes have been ruined or affected by it. They portray love in one way, people expect their lives and their spouses to be like that, and since it does not match with real life, relationships are destroyed.
These ideas are the pieces of wood sticking out. When we see these ideas and like them, we dig a hole in our heads to make room for them, and try to fit it into our outlook in life, when really, we should be cutting them off from the start.
Rav Pincus adds to this, that sometimes we see people, who we hold in high regard, say or do silly things, and we wonder about it. Is it them? Is it me? Of course, you need to go to somebody bigger to know, because, maybe it is you! But if it really is them, now what? Are they no longer as big as we thought they were? Rav Pincus answers, no. They could still be big. They could still be talmidei chachamim or tzaddikim, just with a few "holes" in their outlook.
I was very happy when I read this, because it helps give a better outlook on how to judge people fairly. According to this, a person can be a tzaddik, and even if he has a few "holes," it doesn't mean he's not a tzaddik.
Rav Pincus continues and suggests that it is during this time of Sefiras HaOmer that we have a special opportunity to "fill up" those holes in our spiritual lives. Of course, this first requires identifying what they are (preferably with somebody who has a solid Torah outlook and who knows you well) and making a plan of action to fix them up. By filling up one or two holes this year, and one or two the next, we can slowly pull out all the shtuyot from our minds and continue to grow upwards as a complete and solid person.
Have a great Shabbos!