Question: Everyone wants to make their lives as safe as possible. In Judaism there are all kinds of traditions and symbols that are regarded as means of guaranteeing protection from above: a mezuzah for the protection of the individual and their home, or prayers, such as the traveler’s prayer, the blessings of the home or the business. Shabbat also is considered to be a means of protecting the person who observes it.
Do all these methods actually guarantee our protection from misfortunes?
Answer: All these provide nothing more than a psychological effect. It gives an individual an inner experience of calm and confidence, but they do not impact the occurring events. First thing that Abraham did was to destroy all the “idols,” that is, all external symbols, that can affect our fate. This symbolized the beginning of his spiritual path.
So if today a person believes that external objects and actions can guarantee them protection from above, it is considered idol worship. Traditional commandments of Judaism are not meant to guarantee us protection in this life. Kabbalists created them in order to give people a feeling of belonging to the nation of Israel, in order for them not to forget about their connection with others, about the Torah. But by following them, they are not changing their fate.
A person donates a few cents before getting onto a bus so that the bus does not explode; he as if wants to buy for himself a kind reaction from the Creator for a dollar. But even in this way, he is connecting himself with the system, with the society. This is why I do not laugh at this tradition and view it as beneficial for the wider masses. However, that which is good on one level, is called idol worship on a higher level of development.
Question: It is said that the home with a mezuzah on its doorway is protected by the Creator. How does the mezuzah protect those who are in the house?
Answer: It does not, in no way. It provides purely psychologically comfort, a positive feeling. It is a way for a person to calm themselves. It acts like a tranquilizing pill, nothing more.
If an individual really wants to be under the protection of the upper force, he must study it and enter into contact with it. He needs to know in what way to fulfill the desire of the upper force, not to get what he wants, but to act according to the purpose of creation for the benefit of the entire system.
If he does this, then of course he becomes desirable in the eyes of the general force of the system, called Creator, and he guarantees for himself correct, positive, and fast advancement.
From KabTV’s “A New Life,” #818, 01/26/17