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Metzora(Leviticus 14-15)

We Repent

The person being purified shall immerse his clothing, shave off all his hair, and immerse himself in the water and become pure. (Lev. 14:8)

One of the stages in the purification process of the metzora is tevilah (immersion) in a mikveh. The Chinuch explains that in the beginning the world was submerged in water. Thus when the metzora immerses in the mikveh he feels like he has been created anew. He feels like a new person with a clean slate, leaving all his sins behind and starting over.

Failure is part of the growth process. The key to success is to put the past behind you and start again while using your failures as tools to achieve your goals.

Many accomplished people have had a hard road up the mountain of success, but all you see in the press are their victories. Michael Jordan, possibly the greatest basketball player of all time, is described as "single-handedly redefining the NBA superstar," and yet to get there he admits to failing more than most. He is quoted as saying: "I've missed more than 9,000 shots in my career, I've lost almost 300 games. Twenty six times I've been trusted to take the game winning shot and missed. I've failed over and over and over in my life."

He goes on to say the reason he has succeeded boils down to his constant failure and using failure as his motivation to shoot for success. In other words, Jordan viewed failures as stepping stones towards success; his shooting average was just below 50% so to score he would have to take two shots, one to miss and the other to score.

Do you despair from your failures or view them as a chance for a rebound?

Published: April 7, 2013

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Visitor Comments: 1

(1) barry, April 13, 2013 8:20 PM

this is a good lesson for all

I sust read the other posting from Rabbi scheller and totally disagreed with a protion of his comment and so noted in an earler commet today. But now I see this comment about failures and agree. About 80 years ago my fathers father wrote in his elementary school autograph book that he should treat each disappintment as a springboard toward future successes. We all say it differently but the message is the same.

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