Tuesday, 22 May 2012

Day 12: Create Your Own Spiritual Log

Part 1/3 (to see other parts of the article, click on the pages at the bottom)

by Miller, Rabbi Zvi (See all authors)

"That sounds like a good thing to do, but truthfully, I'm too busy to take the time."

When the Jewish People were slaves in Egypt, Pharaoh was concerned that they would rebel and overthrow his rule. In order to prevent them from organizing a rebellion, he saw to it that they labored under a heavy and continuous workload. When Moshe and Aharon asked him to let the nation leave to worship their G-d, Pharoah interpreted their request as the first stage of revolt and responded, "Intensify their burdens!" (Shemot 5:9) They must not have a spare minute to devise a strategy.

Just as Pharaoh denied the Jews time for action, the fast pace of modern life gives us little time to reflect on our conduct. Even if we have learned the laws of Shmirat Einayim, we may have grown lax about them and not noticed how susceptible we are to improper sights.

Increasing our awareness of Hashem so we can effectively control our behavior requires conscientious vigilance.

We must first be fully aware of our own actions, and this requires taking the time to think. The Talmud tells us that, "Aperson who contemplates his path in this world will merit seeing the deliverance of Hashem." (Moed Katan 5a).

Setting aside time daily for "spiritual accounting," is one of the most effective ways to review your behavior. In just a few minutes each day, you create a sense of accountability and heighten your awareness. Your "account" is strictly your own business. It is personal and should be kept private so you can accurately record questionable behavior without feeling embarrassed by other readers.

First, review the basic principles of Shmirat Einayim. Next, review your day to see your strong points and weak points. This is a highly effective way to strengthen your best traits and behavior and uproot aveirot.