The Mensch Series #3: Be a Mensch to Yourself
Lesson: The Mensch Series #3: Be a Mensch to Yourself
Being a Mensch (good person) is one of the most important aspects of being Jewish. In this session, you will learn about what it means to be created in the Image of God and ways to improve your character to be even more of a mensch. You will learn:
- The teaching of “B’zelem Elohim, being created in the image of God
- The middah of ometz lev, courage to be your best self
- The middah of samach b’chelko, being happy with what you have
#1 READ THIS: All people were created equal and B’zelem Elohim, in the Image of God.
#2 Watch this music video from the 2012 Israel Day Parade on “Equality”
#3 STUDY these Jewish teachings
“People were created in the image of God” (Genesis 1:28) which means that every life is special, sacred, and holy.
“Who is rich? One who is happy with what they have.” Pirkey Avot 4:1
“Have the courage to follow your heart and your intuition.” Steve Jobs
#4 READ this story about the baseball player, Sandy Koufax.
The best pitcher on the Dodgers was named Sandy Kaufax. Sandy was Jewish and he was from Brooklyn. That year in 1965, Yom Kippur (the holiest day of the Jewish year) was also the day for the first game of the World Series. He had to make a decision, play in the game or go to synagogue for Yom Kippur.
He knew that the World Series was important. He also knew that Yom Kippur was important. He was facing a lot of pressure from his team to play but he decided that his Judaism was more important to him and so he made the decision to go to synagogue and not to the game. This showed a lot of ometz lev (courage) to stand up for what he believed in.
#5 WATCH this video about Sandy Kaufax and think about his act of courage and faith
#6 Respond and React
Now that you have watched the videos, read the story, and learned about Middot, please respond to these questions in your Tamid Workbook.
1. What is the english translation of b’zelem Elohim?
2. What are the two middot you learned today and give a one sentence definition for each middah.
3. Explain this phrase: “who is rich? One who is happy with what they have.”
4. If you were Sandy Koufax and had to chose between playing in the first game of the World Series or going to services at Yom Kippur, what would you do?
5. Explain this phrase: first be a blessing to yourself so that you can be a blessing to others (this was said by a man named Rabbi Samson Raphael Hirsch?
Need some help?
We’re here for you. At any time, if you have any questions, please contact one of our teachers so we can help you.
Also, at the end of the session, remember to review your responses in your Tamid Workbook so you can get credit for this lesson. Behatzlacha (Hebrew for good luck)!
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