To walk in God’s ways isn’t to behave like you think God might behave (or worse, as if you are God). It’s to have enough awareness of your actions to know when you’ve done wrong and the capacity to forgive when others have done wrong.
Versions of the golden rule echo throughout our Torah, perhaps because human nature can often lead us astray, or perhaps because it is just that critical to a functioning society, or maybe a little bit of both.
When did you last experience a chain of kindness? Whether it’s taking turns holding the door open for the next person, or adding tzedakah to a class fund to donate, it might surprise you to learn that the action of inspiring kindness in others comes from this week’s Torah portion.
Is there a pang of hurt when you disappoint someone you love? Yes, and it’s natural. Just like our relationships with each other, our relationship with God is built on mutual love and loyalty, and it’s because of that foundation that we strive to be our best selves.
Parshat Acharei Mot is a gentle reminder to each of us that in order to make real progress in ourselves, we must say the change we want to make out loud. The action of change occurs when we take our own inner voice and let others hear our intention.
Our parshah this week is a call to notice small changes, including health issues. The Torah is not suggesting we be hypochondriacs, but simply to be knowledgeable and aware so that we can take the best possible care of ourselves and others.