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What's Your Mango Moment?

March 05, 2021
By Adam Tilove

Dear HBHA Family,

Are you prepared to see a miracle? Let’s take a test to find out. 

This week’s Torah portion is Ki Tisa, and holds one of the darkest moments of the Torah, the building of the Golden Calf. God is so angry, s/he asks Moses if it's OK to kill all of the Israelites and start over with new people, with Moses as its progenitor! Moses convinces God not to ‘annihilate’ them and heads down the mountain with the stone tablets to deal with the blasphemous mess awaiting below. Exodus 32:15 states, “Moses turned and descended from the mountain, with the two Tablets of the Testimony in his hands. Tablets inscribed on both their sides; they were inscribed on one side and the other.”

Did you read a miracle in that? Let me explain!

What does the text mean by Tablets of “Testimony?” Why not Tablets of the Ten Commandments? It is because the way they were inscribed was itself a testimony that they were of divine origin! “Even though they were inscribed straight through the entire tablet, so they showed on both sides of each tablet, the writing was not reversed on either side. The writing was miraculous in another way, for, as the sages teach (Shabbos 104a), the middle of the letter samech and memsofit, remained suspended in midair (Or HaChaim).” (Stone Chumash)

It's one of those lines of Torah that one could easily read over without thinking twice about - but is actually so mystical and magical, it’s impossible to forget!

Isn’t life the same way?

If we can take a moment to stop and observe our miraculous world, how much more grateful and joyous we can be in our day-to-day existence! 

I kid you not, one of the most profound religious experiences I ever had was when I first tasted fresh mango. As the tangy sweetness exploded in my mouth, I thought to myself, “There is a God and he wants us to be happy.” 

As springtime rolls around, I wish you all your own Tablet of Testimony, or “mango moments,” as I like to think of them. We live in a miraculous world: God loves us, and wants us to be happy. We just need to find the time and headspace to see it!

Shabbat Shalom and enjoy this beautiful weekend,

Adam Tilove
HBHA Head of School


P.S. Final plans are underway for our first-ever Civic Service Award Private Broadcast Celebration on March 21!  For more information on attending please click here! We really want to ‘see’ you there!