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  • Rabbi David Paskin

Speak Up

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From Rabbi David

One of the lessons we strive to teach our children is to find their own voice and speak out when they see injustice. It's natural to get upset when someone takes the toy you wanted to play with or when someone says, in a moment of anger, that they don't want to be your friend. The challenge is how do we take those feelings and put them into words that give expression to our emotions and call out the bad behavior in appropriate ways.


In this week's parsha, the high priest, Aaron, loses his two sons to God's wrath. In a his sadness and, perhaps, anger - he remains silent. He doesn't speak up and keeps his pain inside. Many commentaries praise Aaron's actions (or lack thereof) but I see this as a missed opportunity. We must learn how to share our frustrations and feelings, especially when they are in response to a real or perceived wrong. Giving our children the tools to speak their mind and their hearts to their teachers, friends and God is one of the greatest lessons we can teach them.

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