Dealing with ourselves, our inner voice, is one of the hardest things we can do in life. While we can easily fool the external world, our inner world is far richer, deeper and more connected than anything external can ever be.
As baalei teshuva, we start off our journeys often doing just that. We are internally challenged by the world and we challenge ourselves with it. It’s a conscious battle with who we are and what the world means to us. It’s a very heavy and often frustrating time, but also one of deep revelations and hopefully some incredible resolutions.
And then, as we get to know our selves and redefine our place in the world we often lose ourselves. What I mean is, we can often lose our desire to really delve within, to grow as a person, to test ourselves.
Admittedly it is very hard. It takes patience and understanding, it takes compassion on ourselves, it takes a structure or method to get you on the right track. Most of all however, it takes a willingness to go beyond yourself, to choose to live consciously.
Isn’t that the essence of Judaism? To live consciously? To bring our highest selves and our deepest selves into unity? To live with knowledge and passion?
All too often we become so comfortable with where we are and who we are that we stop pushing ourselves to be more. Our daily lives, our much loved values become habits that we don’t think about. We turn into robots. Even good ones. But robots nonetheless. Did I say that blessing? I can’t recall. Did I do the whole morning prayer? I can’t remember. How can you not remember!? Was not this prayer there to connect you with your highest values and the greatest Being? Would you not remember every intimate detail and feeling of being in the presence of the King?
So this is a call to you, dear baalei teshuva, to stay conscious. To stay wanting to be more than you were yesterday. To be thirsty. We should always strive to be one day better today than we were yesterday. Don’t be scared of success, don’t be scared of failure, be scared of not trying to be the best you personally can be.
We’ve done it before in becoming frum, we can keep doing it in being frum. Choose to be conscious, find the tools and surround yourself with other conscious beings. Isn’t that why you’re here?