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    People who don’t think – Ekev

    destroy destructionThe Book of Isaiah contains a verse that has tragically often come true: “Your destroyers and those that lay you waste come forth from you” (Isa. 49:17). No wonder there is a saying, “God save me from my friends; I can look after my enemies myself”.

    Sometimes there are Jews who, usually out of thoughtlessness, harm their own people’s good name and undermine its stability.

    It is a fact of life that we are all part of one another, responsible for each other, holding the fate of our whole people in our hands. Let one Jew act foolishly and we are all blamed. Let one Jew make an unwise decision and we all suffer the consequences.

    Hence it is always good to consult before acting, speaking or publishing. There is no shame in admitting that you do not know everything, and in seeking the advice of people you respect.

    The sages say that even God did this when He contemplated creating the world. He took counsel with the ministering angels – not that they knew more than He did, but He wanted to get a reaction to what He proposed.

    Perhaps when given advice you will decide not to follow it, as God decided not to heed the angels who warned Him against creating man, but to take advice on board is always a sensible thing to do.

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