A relative of mine attended an opening ceremony for a soup kitchen in Israel this past week. The man who was responsible for bringing the idea to fruition spoke at the event. He said that when man was created, the verse stated that G-d took earth from the ground and blew into it, infused into it a soul of life (vayipach b’apov nishmas chayim). In other words, man is comprised of soil and a soul.
The speaker stated that the difference between the words soul and soil is that the word soul has a 'u' and the word soil contains an 'i'.
The fast of Tisha B'av is fast approaching when we mourn the destructions of the two Temples. The second Temple was destroyed because of sinas chinam. Let us focus on ahavat chinam and bettering our relationships. Let us think with our souls on the 'u' in our lives. How can you be helped?
There is no better time in the Jewish calendar than now to open a soup kitchen, to concentrate on others, behaving with our godly souls rather than behaving like dirt- like soil, thinking only of 'I', of ourselves.
May we merit the rebuilding of the Temple speedily in our times.