“You are children of G-d, your Master. You should not cut yourselves nor make a baldness between your eyes for the dead” (Deut. 14:1, Portion of Re’eh). No doubt that knowing we are children of G-d, that we can relate to Him as a child relates to a father, is fundamental to our service of G-d. What’s odd is that G-d informs us of this intimate relationship as part of His lesson about excessive mourning for the deceased. What’s the message there?
When faced with a tragic loss, especially of someone or something that we had grown to depend on, it’s natural to think “What’s going to be? How will life go on?” There’s a loss of security, a deep sense of loneliness. This may lead to excessive mourning. G-d says, “You are my children. I am your Father. No one is closer to you than I, and I will never leave you.”
What a comforting thought! But it doesn’t end there. If we really think about what this means we can live life as a different people. Life with the All Powerful at our side, with us through EVERY challenge, is a life infused with the strength of the Divine; where there are no limits. (Based on Nesivos Shalom & Seforno Deut 14:1)
Rabbi Mordechai Dixler
Program Director, Project Genesis/Torah.org