by Reb Akiva @ Mystical Paths
“If you’ve got a business, you didn’t build that, someone else made that happen.”
There are a lot of wealthy, successful Americans who agree with me — because they want to give something back. They know they didn’t — look, if you’ve been successful, you didn’t get there on your own. You didn’t get there on your own. I’m always struck by people who think, well, it must be because I was just so smart. There are a lot of smart people out there. It must be because I worked harder than everybody else. Let me tell you something — there are a whole bunch of hardworking people out there.
If you were successful, somebody along the line gave you some help. There was a great teacher somewhere in your life. Somebody helped to create this unbelievable American system that we have that allowed you to thrive. Somebody invested in roads and bridges. If you’ve got a business — you didn’t build that. Somebody else made that happen. The Internet didn’t get invented on its own. Government research created the Internet so that all the companies could make money off the Internet.
Give thanks to the government, for it builds your business. (not)
If you’re a religious Jew, you give thanks to G-d. Thanks for the abilities, thanks for the opportunities, thanks for the blessings. You give charity because it’s an obligation – because you built that using your G-d given abilities and G-d given opportunities. And you give charity and help others because of chesed, to help each other as we can, to make the world a better place, a blessed place, where kindness steps in.
We must appreciate our blessings and thank G-d for each and every one. Not because they may not be here tomorrow, though that’s the case, but because we appreciate them today.
I have no idea what the US president was trying to say, but in Judaism you DO get credit for trying and succeeding. You also get obligations to give and to help others succeed. That’s the way of chesed and making this world a holy place.