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  • Aliza Davidovit

I’m the one who did it—Aren’t I great? by Aliza by Aliza by Aliza


I wrote it and I want credit for it. Isn’t that in all our natures? We do something we deem good and want to make sure our name is soldered onto it. It is what you call “ego.” How many unknown soldiers are turning in their unmarked graves because their headstones cannot boast their heroism by name? How many ghost writers are haunting the bookshelves because others take public credit for all their work? Facebook and Twitter are the best modern examples to show that we all want witnesses for our lives. Some go so far as to post what they ate, how they slept, that they are sitting in traffic, that they sneezed, that they walked, that they breathed, reporting their lives in real time down to the most preposterous minutiae. After all, if a tree falls in a forest and no one hears it, does it really make a sound at all? We are all, in our own way, sending out flares to let others know we are alive. And then there is Moses. The most humble man in history, besides Obama of course. Moses was the man offered the greatest job in history by God Himself, and he was reluctant to accept. He wasn’t looking for that place “to go where everybody knows your name, and they're always glad you came.” But, it turns out, he’s a household name nonetheless. Yet, in this week’s Bible reading his name is nowhere to be found. It’s a first since the recounting of his birth. But what makes it evermore strange is that this week’s Torah reading usually falls during the anniversary of Moses’ birth and death. If ever there was a time to honor him and put his name in neon lights it would be in this current chapter. But the omission underscores everything that Moses really was, even more than Cecil B. DeMilles’ film, wherein “Moses” was nominated for a Golden Globe. This great man had led the Jewish nation out of slavery, destroyed the mighty empire of Egypt, played a huge role in unfolding the ten plagues, brought a people through a sea that split in two, received two sets of the Ten Commandments and after that action-packed life he tells God that if You intend to destroy the Jewish people because of the sin of the Golden Calf, then take my name out of your book. And God did. From Moses we learn that life is about a fight for things bigger than ourselves. Perhaps ego is necessary to give us a spine and a little incentive, but it cannot be the wind beneath our wings. Pharaoh was motivated solely by his ego and his own prestige, and he and his gilded kingdom are but mere dust in parched tombs and his army and chariots lay buried deep under the sea. Moses’ ego was MIA. He lived for his people and led them to the Promised Land with fertile teachings from which a nation blooms and to this day sings his praise in their daily prayers. In fact, most great people live in perpetuity because they lived for things greater than themselves. Okay, obviously not anyone of us is a Moses. But we can be to the people in our own lives. We can choose to make peace among family members and not take credit for it; we can leave food by the door of a poor person and not stand there waiting for a thank you; we can pray for someone who’s sick for a year with only God as our witness. When we direct our energy outward to help others and to live “big” lives and not ones that can be tweeted in 140 characters or less, then our lives will speak for themselves. We will not need the bullhorns or billboards to announce to the world, “my name is so and so and I’m just so fabulous.” The truth is none of us would ever need an obituary to prove that we died if all along we had purposeful and unselfish lives to prove that we lived. If it is true that man’s mission is to fix the world and make it a better place for all, sometimes you just have to sign out as “John Doe.” And as the old expression goes: "There is no limit to what a man can do so long as he does not care a straw who gets the credit for it." Humility is a great thing—I intend to try it sometime. By Aliza By Aliza By Aliza By Aliza

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