Photo Credit: courtesy, Sivan Rahav Meir
Sivan Rahav Meir

During these days, do you also not know what to answer when someone asks, “How are you?”

Do you also not know if or how you should ask this question?


We were just hosted at a Shabbat event for grieving families who lost loved ones during the current war that began on October 7th.

The Menucha and Yeshua Charity Fund organized the event in Jerusalem for the heroic families of our fallen heroes.

In the course of this inspiring Shabbat, I was told how Rabbi Yoram Eliyahu answers the “How are you?” question. His son Yedidya Eliyahu, z”l, fell in Gaza.

Whoever asks him “How are you?” receives the following answer: “Learning. We are learning.”

In my view, this answer is most profound. It’s about being broken and shaken, yet accepting the challenge of life as it goes on. It’s about learning how to digest and cope with what happened and the obligation to see what all of this can teach us.

May we hear only good news.


Let Us Multiply and Spread

Have you heard about PTG (post-traumatic growth)? We hear a lot about PTSD (post-traumatic stress disorder) but not much about post-traumatic growth – that is, a positive response to traumatic events. At a recent Women’s Renewal workshop, Rabbi Aaron Darmon spoke about this lesser-known phenomenon.

This is not only about resiliency or a return to the routine of daily life and normal functioning. It is rather growth as a direct, beneficial consequence of the trauma itself. It’s about making changes and reaching new heights that would have been impossible had the trauma not occurred.

This is a response, he explained, that the nation of Israel has demonstrated for thousands of years: the ability to grow from crisis and trauma. This was shown immediately after the Holocaust, when the nation did not sink into paralyzing despair, but returned to the land of Israel where it made astounding progress and flourished in every area of human endeavor.

In the book of Exodus that we begin to read this week, this famous verse is found: “The more they afflicted them, the more they multiplied and spread.” The more the Egyptians enslaved and abused us with grueling labor meant to break us, the more we increased in numbers and actually experienced explosive growth. May we be privileged once again to flourish like never before in response to our most recent trauma.

Translation by Yehoshua Siskin.

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Sivan Rahav-Meir is a popular Channel 12 News anchor, the host of a weekly radio show on Galei Tzahal, a columnist for Yediot Aharonot, and the author of “#Parasha.” Every day she shares short Torah thoughts to over 100,000 Israelis – both observant and not – via Facebook, Twitter, and WhatsApp. Translation by Yehoshua Siskin.