Last week in Israel, life was a bit intense. We were in the midst of a military operation against those who were constantly firing rockets into our cities and towns. We were on the brink of an all out war. My son was one of the many soldiers training to go in to Gaza in the event of a war with ground forces. My daughter and son inlaw left their home in the South in order to escape the constant rocketing.
Yet, somehow, with all this going on, the Israeli people simultaneously managed to lead a daily life of relative normalcy. My daughter and son inlaw ended up taking advantage of the fact that school and work in the South were suspended, and they went up North and found short term jobs for the week to make some money. The people of the North were all too happy to be able to offer opportunities to help the southerners who were temporarily homeless. In fact, people all over Israel opened their homes to host families from the South while the falling rockets there continued. Movie theaters and other public facilities offered free films and other services for all those southerners whose lives were being disrupted. Last week was a time to see the good in people, and the unity of all Jews in Israel. It was both surreal and worrisome, and at the same time, uplifting and inspiring.
It shouldn’t take war with our enemies to bring out the best in us. We should really strive to be the best we can every single day. Rav Kook says it so beautifully: “Every person must know and understand that deep within him a candle burns, and his candle is unlike any other. There is no one who does not possess this candle. Every person must know and understand that it is upon him to strive to reveal this candlelight to all those around him, to ignite it as a giant torch in order to illuminate the entire world.”
Rav Kook’s words have inspired me to design “The Light Within” which does not yet appear on the website. It will though, soon. I’m hoping to offer it both as a decent sized papercut and as a light-box canvas print. What is a light-box canvas print, you ask? It’s actually pretty cool. It’s a canvas print that is actually lit up from the back. It can stand on a counter top or hang on the wall. It will illuminate your entire world! (Well, at very least, your room). I am very close to having a final product, and I love the results! At present, it is only available with electricity suitable for Israel and Europe (220V). If I find a source for American and Canadian wiring (110V), I’ll make some light-boxes that can be used in those countries too. Then everyone can have a reminder of their own special candle, their “Light Within” that Rav Kook talks about.
Get ready to buy one so that you too can illuminate your world at home!