Sep 9, 2010

down to earth



Children book illustration for an old Jewish story called "Down to Earth". Story is below,

There were two neighbors who had adjoining fields. There was one part there that they had a violent feud over. Each one claimed that the part was his and refused to listen to the other ones arguments. Finally they agreed to approach Rabbi Chaim Volozhiner for a judgement. Each one stated his claims to the Rabbi. The Rabbi heard their arguments and suggested that he wants to see the piece of the field that was in question. Maybe that would help him understand their individual points of view. The Rabbi studied the layout of the land and its boundaries. Then he heard their arguments again.

All of a sudden, the Rabbi bent down and placed his ear to the soil. The two men were astounded. "What are you doing there on the ground?" one of them asked.

"I have heard your points of view about this piece of property," answered Rav Chaim, "but now I would like to hear what the ground has to say for itself."


The men thought he was joking, so one man said in a humorous tone, "All right, so indeed tell us-what does the ground say?"


Rav Chaim smiled at them and said, "The ground finds it hard to understand the anger and short-sightedness of both of you. It says, 'This one claims that I belong to him, then the other one claims that no, I belong to him. The truth, though, is that eventually they will both belong to me!' "

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