A few weeks ago a woman from my temple asked me to write a D'var Torah. This is a speech that has meaning and is usually done by someone in the congregation rather than the rabbi. The speech must explain the part that is discussed in the Torah and usually should teach members of the congregation leaving them enriched with a new found insight or understanding. I was asked to discuss the topic Mishpatim. The congregants enjoyed listening to my speech and my husband encouraged me to post it on my blog.
The way I understand Mishpatim is that it is basically laws set up from Hashem (G-d) so that we are fair to ourselves and to our neighbors. As an educator, I have to set up my own laws or rules. Without them, my classroom would be full of chaos. Mishpatim concludes with the promise from G-d to lead us into the land of Israel on one condition, that we hold the Torah ( Jewish bible) and do mitzvahs (good deeds). One thing we definitely need in this world is order. We need order especially when lately we are surrounded by hate. Many people I know have recently faced anti-semnitism. However, as Anne Frank once said, "I do believe in spite of everything that people are really good at heart." I agree with Ms. Frank, but unfortunately I definitely feel evil is amongst people as well. Lately many people expressed anger and hatred toward people in the political world. I am not going to mention the infamous names that we hear about in the current media. However, when G-d gave us rules, I think that he expects us to try to look past and be a fair person no matter what.. If we don't agree with someone's philosophies or political views then that is ok. We have the right as human beings to believe in whatever we want to. That is what makes us real. However, we owe it to ourselves to not promote hate in this beautiful but scary world that we live in. We must realize that laws gives us order. Order gives us structure. Structure gives us a sense of belonging and that in turn gives us peace.
Thank you for reading my speech and I hope you found it insightful.