by: Batya Hefter.

He did it again. Rabbi Mordechai Yosef transforms a bygone prohibition into a living challenge.  לא תעשה לך פסל   ‘You shall not make a graven image’. In the ancient world people focused their attention on idols. How is this relevant today?

Rabbi Mordechai Yosef teaches that an idol is something that has distinct and finite dimensions; it is flawless and perfect.   What you see is what there is; there is nothing left to the imagination, no possibility for wonder, since all is revealed and “understood”.    RMY explains that the inner meaning of the prohibition is not to make an idol of yourself.  In other words, do not make what you are focusing on, your world view, into an idol.   Don’t make it into an inflexible absolute, with no room to grow.    Being human, our perceptions are always partial incomplete and imperfect.

To grow, we need to recognize our idols.  Our ‘idols’ give us a false sense of control and security and that is hard to let go of.   We need to ask ourselves where are we “stuck” and how we can free ourselves.  The courage to look beyond where we are is the source of faith.