Wednesday, August 9, 2017

Rabbi Sacks: Why Civilizations Fail-Lack of Faith

Read the whole thing. 

"What is the real challenge of maintaining a free society? In parshat Eikev, Moses springs his great surprise. Here are his words:"

Be careful that you do not forget the Lord your God. … Otherwise, when you eat and are satisfied, when you build fine houses and settle down, and when your herds and flocks grow large and your silver and gold increase and all you have is multiplied, then your heart will become proud and you will forget the Lord your God, who brought you out of Egypt, out of the land of slavery. … You may say to yourself, “My power and the strength of my hands have produced this wealth for me.’ … If you ever forget the Lord your God … I testify against you today that you will surely be destroyed. (Deut. 8:11-19)

"What Moses was saying to the new generation was this: You thought that the 40 years of wandering in the wilderness were the real challenge, and that once you conquer and settle the land, your problems will be over. The truth is that this is when the real challenge will begin. It will be precisely when all your physical needs are met — when you have land and sovereignty, and rich harvests and safe homes ­– that your spiritual trial will commence."