Monday, 21 May 2012

Day 24: Provide a Spiritual Inheritance for Your Children

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

by Miller, Rabbi Zvi (See all authors)

What is the relationship between Shmirat Einayim and the success of my children in living a lifestyle of Torah values?

Is there anything more beautiful than sitting with your family at the Shabbat table and discussing Parshat HaShavuah? Each one of us wants to see the continuityof a Torah lifestyle in our children. While there are many factors that contribute to their spiritual wellbeing, much of the results depend on our own level of commitment.

Numerous Torah sources attest to the remarkable mechanism that Hashem implemented in this world - the fact that children benefit spiritually from the actions of their parents. Think of it as spiritual DNA. The Midrash Bereishit Rabbah (128:18) hints at the transmission of kedushah from one generation to the next:

When Yosef went forth to rule over Egypt, the daughters of kings used to gaze at him through the lattice and throw jewelry so that he would lift up his eyes and look at them. Yet he did not look at them! Hashem said to him, ["Because you did not look at the ornaments thrown to get your attention] I will give your daughters an ornament in the Torah." What ornament? [They will have] a portion in the Torah.

Just as Yosef's modest behavior blossomed with merit for his future offspring, so too, our actions affect not only our own spiritual nature, but that of our descendents as well.