Friday, December 17, 2010



9 Tevet, 5771
December 16th, 2010

A midrash teaches: An incident occurred, that a man died and left instructions in his will that "My son should not inherit anything of mine until he becomes a fool.
Puzzled, the son brought the will to court for an explanation. The provision perplexed the rabbis there, and they brought it in turn to one of the great teachers of their age: Rabbi Yehoshua ben Korha.
“When they arrived at [Rabbi Yehoshua’s] place they hid from his sight because they found him crawling about his hands and knees with a straw in his mouth waddling after his young son. After he had finished playing with his son, they approached him and asked him if he could interpret the will. He began to laugh and said to them: "By your lives, the matter of which you have come to inquire, just this past moment I had been demonstrating (that the man's son would not inherit anything until he became a father)." From here we learn that when a person becomes a parent, s/he becomes a clown."' (Midrash Tehillim 92:13)
            Would that we all had people to instruct us in the wisdom of foolishness. I am lucky, because our ECC kids try to remind me of this Torah every day. To live in complete seriousness is to miss the essence of life. To laugh, to sing, to cry, to be creative, to jump in piles of leaves – these things are necessary. The dry cleaning is not. This is the truth that wise people live.

            May we all be blessed with holy foolishness.

Special thanks to our ECC Moms for learning this Torah with me during Mom’s Shmooze.

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