When I look around me, sometimes I am disturbed by what I see both in me and in the world.
Woe that a Neshama can speak, but it is dismissed by the listeners, albeit without malevolent intent or even awareness – the neshama made into חינם.
Woe that a child yearns with curiosity to understand the world, but his voice is squelched by the adults who “know better” and need to “discipline” – the neshama made into חינם.
Woe that one can argue and disagree, putting the other one down, without appreciating the kernels of value and kedusha of the one with a different opinion or approach – it’s as if the neshama of the other is nothing.
Woe that a conversation can be just “words that fill the space” without the person or neshama behind it – it’s as if the neshama of oneself is nothing.
But how to repair?
I can learn to value every neshama and interact with that in mind, according each neshama the respect it deserves, including my own. נשמה שנתת בי טהורה היא.
Each person is a face of Hashem and expresses an aspect of Hashem that no one else can express. שבעים פנים לתורה.
When faced with an individual who on the surface appears anti-Torah or of very different values than me, I can search deeper for the spark they have to share or represent. איזהו חכם הלומד מכל אדם.
I can give permission for the other’s existence, appreciate the other’s role, as Hashem does by creating him and giving him a particular significant mission, and as the Angels do: ונותנים רשות זה לזה.