Dei'ah veDibur - Information & Insight

A Window into the Chareidi World

28 Tishrei 5765 - October 13, 2004 | Mordecai Plaut, director Published Weekly









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Shema Yisrael Torah Network
Shema Yisrael Torah Network











Home and Family


This letter didn't make it in Elul or Tishrei but is always relevant

To all my friends, neighbors, acquaintances I meet in the street, at shiurim, simchas, all the people whom I am closely or loosely in contact with...

I apologize. I feel great remorse.

For what, you ask?

For all the things I've done against you. What terrible things? I don't remember anything, you say.

But I remember. I know the times when I didn't say hello, I didn't smile or even return your gaze. The times I didn't judge you favorably or didn't offer to help when I saw you needed it.

I may have been tired, in a hurry, or just let my yetzer hora take over.

I didn't come to your wedding or even visit you during your shiva. I missed your Kiddush. I didn't send over a cake. I didn't welcome you when you moved in or send you off properly when you left. All those `you's' whom I would like to be close to...

How could I not have thanked `you,' after all you did for me? But I didn't, or only partially.

I didn't let `you' help when you so much wanted to. I never explained all kinds of puzzling behavior, leaving you wondering...

Why haven't I been more friendly?

I wish I were a happier person, a stronger person, possessing better conversational skills, to cheer you, comfort you, get to know `you' better. I feel bad that I'm so shy, which makes me ignore my obligations to you, and you, and you...

So many things I've done and shouldn't, or didn't and should have. And the many things I was not aware of, except for a feeling in the back of my mind.

Knowing myself, I know that I could have approached you Erev Yom Tov and thanked you for your babysitting, lending me that cup of sugar or mixer and doing me big and small favors, all of you out there, collectively and individually, and wished you a good year. Well, to some of you I did, but not enough.

But I promise to try to improve, starting now. And this letter, impersonal as it is, is my beginning of NOW. So -- please help me.

Anonymously yours

Dear Reader -- edit above letter, cross out, add your own list, and implement.

Yes, we mean -- `YOU.'


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