I love this season approaching the High Holidays when everyone goes out of their way to greet you with a smile and wish you a blessed new year. I was shocked yesterday morning when someone who normally doesn't give me the time of day me wished me a happy and healthy year. This morning, someone who was drving her car stopped (she was the only car on the road in either direction) and wished me a blessed year.
Judy Montagu has written an article in the JPost about the power of a smile.
The “Tzaddik of Jerusalem,” Reb Aryeh Levin (1885-1969), would make a point of greeting the street cleaners he passed early in the morning on his way to synagogue. He understood their thankless, low-paid, repetitive job and expressed his appreciation of its value.
The disciples of another 20th-century sage, Rabbi Chaim Friedlander, noticed the warm smile on his face even when he spoke on the telephone.
Someone asked him why he bothered since the other person couldn’t see his smile. “He can hear it,” the rabbi responded.
Read full article: http://www.jpost.com/Opinion/Columnists/Article.aspx?id=284720
Rebbetzin Esther Jungreis has been wrting about the tragedy of family breakdowns in the Jewish Press over the last few weeks. She rightly observes the differences between how children were raised in her generation and how they are raised nowadays.
Now let us take a glimpse at the homes of today. When parents and grandparents enter the house they consider themselves fortunate if the children acknowledge their presence with so much as a grunt as they sit glued to their computers or whatever else they are absorbed in. When grandparents get up to leave after a visit, it is they who have to go up to the children to give them a kiss and say goodbye.
Read full article: http://www.jewishpress.com/judaism/rebbetzins-viewpointrebbetzin-jungreis/the-curse-of-family-breakdowns/2012/09/12/
Those of you who unfortunately are not on speaking terms with family members, why don't you hang up a picture on your fridge of the estranged family member, smile at the photo and ask G-d to shower that person blessings during the new year. Perhaps he/she will be able to feel the positive feelings emanating from you.