Unrest in the Middle East. 9/11 anniversary. Superpower drama. 40 years since the Yom Kippur War. Basic human modesty violated. Unsettling loss of privacy.
The very underpinnings of our world seem to be loosening, right in front of our eyes.
As we prepare for Yom Kippur, only a few short days away, we have so much to be personally grateful for. Yet our minds and hearts are also anxious.
Many feel helpless. High school and college students have been writing to us at Chabad.org with a sense of worry and dread: Your world is coming apart, their screens scream at them. We feel helpless, they emote. How do we cope, they ask.
(Our rabbis and counselors respond to each one, individually addressing his or her needs and concerns, offering the priceless wisdom of our holy Torah.)
The Lubavitcher Rebbe, of righteous memory, would often point out how each and every one of us truly can — and therefore must! — make a difference.
The Jewish people is intrinsically interconnected and the entire world is deeply interdependent, the Rebbe would explain. A mitzvah done on one side of Planet Earth deeply impacts the very well-being of people, and the stability of entire nations, on the other side. Quoting Maimonides, the Rebbe taught how at every moment each one of us has the potential to tip the balanced scales of the world toward merit and goodness.
If earlier generations found this difficult to envision, nowadays, when the push of a single button can have immediate global repercussions, it needs no imagination.
In the face of global turmoil, and in face of danger to our brethren in the Land of Israel, we must each increase in our acts of loving kindness to one another — and in all aspects of our relationship to G-d, Creator and Master of the world.
It is for this very purpose that we have been created! And it is these individual acts that will indeed stabilize the world!
With the approach of Yom Kippur, when the world’s future always hangs in balance, let us all be sensitive to this awesome responsibility — and to its mind-boggling empowerment and opportunity!
Let us each act and do our share. One more mitzvah. We will change the world! And the entire world will be blessed with tranquility, and with the sweetest, most wonderful year to come!