Not like your father

photo courtesy of ARG അര്ഗ്
photo courtesy of ARG അര്ഗ്

A young rabbi became infamous because of his unconventional methods and teachings. Because of this, he earned the ire of the elder, more traditional rabbis. One day, an elder approached him and said, “Why do you do these things? If your father were still alive, I’m not sure he would approve of what you are doing. You are nothing like him.”

The young man replied, “When my father was young, he initiated many changes and reforms that have been our custom for these past 20 years. Now, we no longer think of these as reforms because we have been so used to them. But back then, everyone was against him because he was the only one who wanted to change, who was not content with the way things were. It is not true that I am not like my father. On the contrary, I am exactly like him. He followed no one. I, too, follow no one.”

No Fruit

Photo courtesy of ARG, Flickr
Photo courtesy of ARG, Flickr

The disciple approached the master and said, “I have been with you for fifteen years and yet it seems that my stay here has yielded no fruit.”

The master replied, “It is true that you have been with me for fifteen years. Yet I have observed that in all those years, you still seek to cling to something, whether to a word I speak or to some obscure passage of scripture. Learn to have the courage to let go completely. Fruit only comes when you are no longer timid enough to shake the tree.”

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