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Thursday, Elul 28, 5783 (Hakhel Year) / September 14, 2023


(Continued from yesterday): Anxiously, they all went to see the boat full of this precious commodity.  But when they came to the ship, a terrible stench of rotten fish greeted them. 


"This is your wealth?" they asked bitterly.  "To bring back some rotten fish you spent all these years on the Island?"


In great embarrassment and frustration, he realized how he wasted his time and effort all these years. 


Then, reaching into his pocket, he found a diamond which he had completely forgotten about.


"Wow! this is a precious diamond!" they all exclaimed.  "Did you bring any more of these?" they asked.  He searched his pockets and found a few more precious stones.


With the few diamonds that he brought; his family was able to live a comfortable life.  His great regret now was why he forgot the purpose of his journey to the Island.  How could he have forgotten what true value was?  Had he remembered, he would have brought back a ship loaded with diamonds.


Similarly, is the story of our life. Our soul comes to this world to "collect diamonds" -- in the form of mitzvot and good deeds.  In fact, the scriptures tell us that Torah and mitzvot are even more precious than diamonds. Unfortunately, we forget the purpose of our mission in this world.  We forget what true wealth is.  Instead, we become influenced by our environment of material possessions and lose track of our true mission. In the World-to-Come, monetary wealth and financial success have no value. 


Instead, we are asked, "How did you use your wealth?  Where are the true diamonds - the mitzvot and good deeds that you accomplished?"


Like the poor man who wasted his time gathering fish instead of diamonds, we too, must make sure that we do not miss the great opportunity in this world to acquire more and more mitzvot, by utilizing our material blessings for the right purposes.


As we usher in the New Year 5784, it is worthwhile to reflect on our true mission in life.  We must remember that each good deed we accomplish, every time we study Torah and each act of charity we do, we are collecting diamonds for which the reward is enormous and everlasting!


Speaking of real diamonds and true wealth… I dedicate this Torah Fax in honor of my mother’s 100th birthday, which we celebrated this week. It was attended in person and via zoom, by 600 of her descendants, thank G-d. May Hashem grant her many more years of good health, long life and Nachas.  


May you and your loved ones be inscribed in the Book of Life, Good Health & Nachas.

May we merit the coming of Moshiach NOW.

May the year 5784 usher in an era of peace for Israel and for the entire world.