Saturday, September 15, 2007

More New Year's Wishes

Last Year I got to share one of my favorite stories that relate to Rosh Hashanah. It's still a gem, so give it a read.

Rosh Hashanah, it turns out, isn't just the Jewish New Year. According to Jewish tradition, it's the day that Man was created (and basically the anniversary of the world). I know, deep stuff.

So, along this whole mankind theme, I thought I would share one of my favorite quotes from the Mishnah. Think of it as more New Year's PMA.

[85] Mishnah, Sanhedrin 4: 5

For this reason, man [i.e. the first human being] was created alone to teach that whoever destroys a single life is as though he had destroyed an entire universe, and whoever saves a single life is as if he had saved an entire universe. Furthermore [the first man was created alone] for the sake of peace among men, so that no one could say to another, “My ancestor was greater than yours” . . . [Yet another reason] was to proclaim the greatness of the Holy One, blessed be He, for when a human being strikes many coins from one mould, they all resemble one another, but the supreme King of kings, the Holy One, blessed be He, fashioned every man in the stamp of the first man, and yet not one of them resembles his fellow.

In one quote, the Rabbis have show that every human life is unique and beyond value. Not bad for a document consolidated in the year 200CE.

May we all take these words to heart in this upcoming year, and all know peace.

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