Shabbat Talmud Study: How Can Our Brokenness Make us Better and Stronger?

In his evocative column this week entitled “The Moral Peril of Meritocracy,” Times columnist David Brooks raises the question: when you are broken by life, what does that brokenness do to you?

Life had thrown them into the valley, as it throws most of us into the valley at one point or another. They were suffering and adrift.

Some people are broken by this kind of pain and grief. They seem to get smaller and more afraid, and never recover. They get angry, resentful and tribal.

But other people are broken open.

The foundation of our Exodus story is that we were broken. We were slaves. For 430 years.

Tomorrow morning, our last class before the first seder, we will see how the Haggadah provides us with a roadmap for how our brokenness can make us better and stronger. It is not easy. It is at least as likely that our brokenness makes us smaller. But it is possible. What do we need to think about, what do we need to be working on, so that we can will ourselves from our broken place to our better and stronger place?

Your Exodus is in your hands.

Shabbat shalom and chag kasher v’sameakh,