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I am a fan of Rabbi Rami Shapiro. Perhaps you've heard of him as author, teacher, speaker, columnist or rabbi. After joining The National Be a Blessing Day Breakfast hosted by the One River Foundation (of which I presume he's a founder), I went back to one of his books to revisit the message of being a blessing to all the families of the earth. It's in there but I also found this. In the spirit of being a blessing, I share it with you.


Because if this moment could be other than it is, it would be.


Because if you could be other than you are in this moment, you would be.


Because given what is at this moment, what happens must happen.


Because you aren’t free to change what is, only what is next.


Because this isn’t the best of all possible worlds, it is the only possible world.

Lama? Kakha.

In modern Hebrew, we have a saying. Lama? Kakha, “Why? Because.” Not “because I said so,” or “because God wills it,” or “because it is your karma or fate or destiny,” just kahka, “because.” Kahka can also be translated as “just so.” Things are the way they are because they can’t be other than the way they are. Job suffers because suffering is part of the divine play. You don’t deserve it and you can’t escape it; you can only accept it and move on.

Such an answer doesn’t leave much room for further conversation, and that’s the point. Discussing Why? is an endless conversation that tends to get more and more removed from the world. Once you understand who you are, where you came from, where you are going, and how you should live, the question Why? becomes somewhat irrelevant.

…I'm not asking you to stop asking Why? but I am asking that you put the question aside until you first realize the answers to the other four questions.* When you do, I suspect you'll find asking the fifth question totally unnecessary.

By Rabbi Rami Shapiro excerpted from his book Perennial Wisdom for the Spiritually Independent

* The four questions are 1) Who am I? 2) Where did I come from?, 3) Where am I going?, and 4) How shall I live?

I recommend the book if you like the idea of exploring those four big questions, and, sure, asking Why?, the fifth question. It's full of guidance and is the sort of thing you can pick up and put down over and over again for all the years of your life from teen to middle to old. I only wish I'd started reading it in my teens.

Peace and love to you in the week ahead.


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