Rebuilder Series: You Can’t Be Copied by Marshall Lestz
Good Morning Everybody and Shavua Tov,
Not that long ago my wife needed to send one of our sons a copy of his birth certificate. One way to do this is by ordering an official copy online, or using a notary to sign an affidavit. But my wife was curious what would happen if she made a copy herself with our home copier. So she did, and lo and behold, when she looked at the copy, it had the word “VOID” printed out on it. Don’t ask me how that technology works but it’s pretty amazing.
I couldn’t help but think that this is a great reminder for us– a reminder that we are each a true one of a kind original who can never be duplicated.
As we find ourselves now in the three week period leading up to Tisha B’av, let’s keep this photo copy idea in mind. A great deal of sinas chinam ( baseless hatred) comes from not recognizing how unique we are. If we think someone is better than us in some respect, it can sometimes be a blow to our self-esteem. And to compensate for that pain, we may talk badly about that person, be unfriendly towards him, judge him negatively, become passive aggressive, and even come to hate him. All this from not recognizing OUR OWN one of a kind incredibleness.
But the more we recognize and appreciate our own uniqueness, the less threatened we are by other people’s special qualities. I don’t need to lower that person in my eyes in order to raise myself up if I already realize that the Creator of Universe custom-made me! Each one of us is a once in a lifetime, one-of-a-kind phenomenon! We’ve got to own that and internalize that.
So the next time you notice that you’re needlessly comparing yourself to someone, just remind yourself those thoughts are “VOID.” Just picture a big VOID written in your mind’s eye. And then take 5 seconds and happily remind yourself that Hashem made you! Your specialness and uniqueness are a given. Hashem doesn’t make copies, He makes ORIGINALS. And the more we recognize that, the more harmony will prevail; and G-d willing, we’ll be a giant step closer to overcoming sinaas chinam once and for all.
Have a day as unique as you are everybody,
Keep on Building!
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