The blessing of listening


August 18, 2023

(JNS) — Do blessings and curses come from heaven or do we bring them upon ourselves by the way we live our lives?

Last week’s Torah reading, Re’eh, from Deuteronomy 11, begins with blessings and curses. Moses is continuing his sermonic messages before he takes leave of his people. The great leader waxes philosophical:

“Behold, I give you this day a blessing and a curse. The blessing: that you hearken to the commandments of God that I command you this day. And the curse: if you do not hearken to the commandments of God and you stray from the path.”

Interestingly, if you look close...

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