by Reb Akiva @@ Paths Mystical
This morning found me on a busy street in a Jerusalem business district. The traffic was busy and the sidewalks crowded.
I squeezed around a delivery truck parked up on the curb. A large man, about 30 years old wearing a very exposing A-shirt, deeply tanned, bald, was unloading large boxes from the back of the truck onto a large pallet hand truck. Something you’d only use if the boxes were too heavy for a regular dolly. What caught my eye though was his arms, huge and covered in very large multi-colored tattoos. Tattoos aren’t as unusual in Israel as they should be (it’s prohibited in Judaism to tattoo any part of the body), but large very public tattoo displays such as these were – multi-colored going from the shoulder down to the elbow – is not often seen. Even less so in Jerusalem, with it’s higher concentration of religious Jews.
The boxes were stacked 2 or 3 across and 2 high. Right as I was walking past the pallet hand truck he was placing the last box on the stack. And with the last box some of the lower boxes collapsed a bit and most of the boxes teetered and fell off the hand truck.
As it finished I looked at the man and gave him a bit of a smile and chuckle, my unspoken statement being “oy, sometimes stuff happens”.
He then turned to me and said, “Don’t give power to the Soton! A bad thing happens to a Jew and you smile? Don’t give the Soton the pleasure and the success!”
And I was reminded, never judge a Jew by the way he looks. You never know what goodness is hiding inside, and every Jew is filled with mitzvot like a pomegranate is with seeds.