"Moshiach is ready to come now-our part is to increase in acts of goodness and kindness" -The Rebbe

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Changing our surroundings

Sometimes we may choose to deal with unpleasant situations by withdrawing and thereby escaping from that environment. In the letter below, the Rebbe explains that if one is in a position of influence, he must not immediately withdraw when conflict arises; rather, he should persistently work toward fixing the problem in his current environment, albeit in a constructive manner.
... As for what you write concerning praying with a Minyan—this is one of the foundations [of Jewish observance]. It is understandable that the mundane talking that you hear in Shul disturbs you greatly. However, the solution to this is not to davven alone in your home; instead, you should use your influence, and the warmth with which Hashem has blessed you, to influence those around you to behave in Shul, which is a holy place, as one ought to behave in a holy place. When you speak to a Jew—and the core of every Jew [“pinteleh Yid”] always remains whole—and you speak to him with heartfelt words, ultimately you will succeed, and then the merit that will come to the community will be attributable to you.

Igros Kodesh, Vol. 9, p. 303.
Moreover, the HaYom Yom of 30 Adar I states that affecting ones environment is a defining quality of a chossid:
My father [the Rebbe Rashab] said, A chossid creates an environment. If he does not, he had better check his own baggage carefully, to see whether his own affairs are in order. The very fact that he fails to create an environment should make him as broken as a splinter. He must demand of himself: ‘What am I doing in this world?!’”

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