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January 23, 2017 / 25 Tevet, 5777
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Predestination And Human Effort



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This concept has great relevance to us, as there are many situations in which we reach a point where there is no clear path to follow – deciding from two almost identical career choices, determining which medical “expert” to listen to, deciding which school to enroll our children in, etc. – and we are obligated to be responsible, use our best judgment, and determine according to the ways of the world what is the best approach. Once we have reached that point, we “throw our clumpof gold intothe fire.” We rely on Hashem to bring about the results He has predetermined to be the best for us.

Rabbi Ben Tzion Shafier

About the Author: Rabbi Shafier is the founder of TheShmuz.com. The Shmuz is an engaging, motivating shiur that deals with real life issues. All of the Shmuzin are available free of charge at www.TheShmuz.com or on the Shmuz App for iphone or Android.


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  1. Because the outcome's predetermined with respect to matters divine, the effort is irrelevant. Instead, one might deem th'Almighty's concern as principally preserving the separation of the galaxies, upon which our lives assuredly depend. That th'Almighty might not particularly care about us, at least about our bouts with gastrointestinal ailments, for example, would be unsurprising. We do possess abilities to alter the outcome of much in our lives; the proof of that is common experience. That our lives themselves are of little import when it comes to keeping the galaxies apart is equally obvious.


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