Shabbat 49a: The Wrong Reason

The Talmud teaches that everything is dependent on mazal, “even the Sefer Torah in the ark”. Some sifrei Torah are used week in and week out, while others only see the light of day on Simchat Torah. So, too, certain mitzvoth “get lucky” and are widely observed, whereas others are somehow neglected. And mitzvoth that enjoy widespread observance in one generation may be less fortunate in another.


Sin gets bad press these days, because it is experienced as a guest that brings a whole slew of unwelcome associates into the house--guilt, bad feeling, punitiveness. These alleged running mates of sin are anathema to most, and so the very ability to examine our realities is muted by the desperate postmodern drive to feel good at all costs. And the costs are indeed high, as the soft-pedalling of our spiritual mistakes morphs into a full-blown denial of the need to change.
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