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Printed from HarfordChabad.org

Be Inclusive!

Wednesday, 10 December, 2014 - 11:56 pm

I would never consciously hurt someone else!  Would you?

I am not perfect so how can I really affect other people in a positive way? Have you ever asked this question?

Don’t we all want to change the world and make it better? Is it even possible?

We turn to the biblical Yosef for direction and relevant lessons.

When Yosef was named, his mother said “Yosef Hashem li ben acher” lit; may G-d add to me another son. Acher means another; it can also mean an other - an outsider.

Yosef also cared for all ‘other’ people; those who were different as well as the outsiders. He reached out to these people and brought them close, making the acher - an outsider, into a ben - a son and part of the family. Yosef was truly a non-judgmental person; unifying people and making the world a better place.

The Torah tells us about Yosef that “Yosef had handsome features and a beautiful complexion.” Yosef was beautiful both inside and out. Rashi says that He made sure to maintain his beauty by combing his hair.  Yosef knew that if you want to have a positive effect on others, you need to maintain your “beauty” to ensure that you are constantly striving for and actively working on self-improvement.

If you do not want to work on self-improvement for your own benefit, do it so you can have a positive effect on others. You do not need to be perfect to affect people, yet you do need to be going in the right direction. Then it is a no brainer to be able to change the world and make it better; just be you and reach out to those who are “outsiders”, welcome them and make them feel at home.

Have a wonderful Shabbos,

Rabbi Kushi Schusterman

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