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If It Has Scales, It Has Fins

Adapted from the teachings of the Lubavitcher Rebbe

GYE Corp. Tuesday, 10 January 2012

The mishna says "any fish with scales has fins". (On the flip side, a fish with fins might not have scales). 'Fins' indicate the positive mitvas: 'action related' activities we do as we navigate through the day (like having fins to get us around). Scales are a 'protective shield' on a fish, similar to our 365 lo ta'aseh which we protect ourselves from. Internally we also make a 'protective shield' against activities contrary to the Torah.

We may indeed become 'BIG PEOPLE' in the world; DOING a lot because of our fins which get us around. With no 'scales' however, we are immediately lured into the deadly habits of the world foreign to a yiddishe neshoma. We're not kosher, like a whale or dolphin with ONLY fins but no scales (like Maddoff or ex-gov Spritzer: Jews with lots of 'fins' and accomplishments with no 'scales' of protection against the lo sa'aseh).

Our holy Mishna tells us clearly in TORAS EMES: "EVERY FISH WITH SCALES HAS FINS!". Every time we avoid looking where we shouldn't look, (i.e. we use our 'scales' of protection), EVEN IF THE PAIN IS SOOOOO GREAT BY NOT LOOKING, we automatically are growing (with our ruchnius 'fins') closer to Hashem. Torah defines reality and paskens so. We automatically have both fins AND scales, which makes us 'kosher'. We may feel ONLY PAIN by not looking at the 'triggers' initially, and we may not understand how, but we automatically are growing.

Soon too, habit becomes second nature and the pain which dominated at first becomes basically batul B'miut as we learn to see Hashem through the pain, which is transformed into great, great simcha as we can even share about our victories with dear beloved friends.

Hope this is not too long, but I live with this every day.