Temple Sholom Greenwich CT, Jewish Synagogue Greenwich CT

300 East Putnam Avenue, Greenwich, CT 06830
203-869-7191 • Fax: 203-661-4811 • [email protected]

Rabbi's Weekly Teachings

August 17, 2018


The prophet Jeremiah captured the heart of our sacred tradition when he pronounced:

“Thus said God—Do what is just and right; rescue from the defrauder him who is robbed; do not wrong the stranger, the fatherless, and the widow; commit no lawless act, and do not shed the blood of the innocent in this place…Your father ate, and drank, and dispensed justice and equity—then all went well with him. He upheld the rights of the poor and needy—then all was well. That is truly heeding Me.”

(Jeremiah 22:3, 13-17)

As Jews, we believe that paramount to our religious way of life is our ethical living. Specifically, we embrace the religious principle of tikkun olam—that each of us individually is responsible to “repair our world.”

It’s important to note that it is each individual’s responsibility to bring healing to our world, and that we cannot “outsource” the obligation to others.

We believe that we are religiously obligated to fix everything in the world that is broken. While we are not obligated to fully succeed in this endeavor, we must constantly try to succeed with all of our might.

The ancient Jewish mystics believed that it’s “only as a result of the world’s restoration that both cosmos and the Holy can be said to be complete, and that humanity can once again be whole and united with the Holy.”

Each person needs to participate in the process that brings about repair and healing to the world because it’s the participation in this process that is the means by which we bring wholeness to ourselves and our relationship with God. It’s an individual obligation to heal the world and each of us brings our own unique capabilities.

We often utilize the term “social action” in place of tikkun olam and in fact the Temple has its own ever-important social action committee and ongoing initiatives.

We need to pursue activities whereby we can dedicate not only our resources, but also our time (the most precious commodity of all).

We should ask ourselves: “What am I most capable of doing?”

For some, we can visit the elderly, the sick or those in mourning.

For others, we can identify a cause for which we become active, or an organization that can best use our time. Some can offer support at a soup kitchen, love and companionship for someone lonely or time to listen to someone who needs to be heard.

Each day can contain some step in bringing healing to the world, and subsequently a little extra healing within ourselves. Let’s make the time to be present with what God wants, so God can be present with us.

P.S. For more details about our Temple’s ongoing Social Action initiatives, please contact Scott Kramer, Social Action Committee Chair.

Shabbat Shalom,
Rabbi Mitch
[email protected]


For Rabbi Mitch's Writings in the News, click here



Weekly Teachings:

Weekly Teaching, August 17, 2018
Weekly Teaching, August 10, 2018
Weekly Teaching, August 3, 2018
Weekly Teaching, July 27, 2018
Weekly Teaching, July 20, 2018
Weekly Teaching, July 13, 2018
Weekly Teaching, July 6, 2018
Weekly Teaching, June 29, 2018
Weekly Teaching, June 22, 2018
Weekly Teaching, June 15, 2018
Weekly Teaching, June 8, 2018
Weekly Teaching, June 1, 2018
Special Memorial Day Teaching, May 28, 2018
Weekly Teaching, May 25, 2018
Weekly Teaching, May 18, 2018
Weekly Teaching, May 11, 2018
Weekly Teaching, May 4, 2018
Weekly Teaching, April 27, 2018
Weekly Teaching, April 20, 2018
Weekly Teachng, April 13, 2018
Weekly Teaching, April 5, 2018
Weekly Teaching, March 30, 2018
Weekly Teaching, March 23, 2018
Weekly Teaching, March 16, 2018
Weekly Teaching, March 9, 2018
Weeky Teaching, March 2, 2018

Archive of Rabbi's Teachings