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Rabbi Google

Friday, 27 August, 2010 - 6:40 pm

Dear Friends,

Yesterday as I was surfing on my favorite news website (after Israeli news) which is news in the world of technology and computers, I came across an important message: "Google launched a new feature, which will definitely come into good use. From now on, after hitting the "send" button on Gmail, you still have 30 seconds to change your mind, and get the email back..."

This option will surely spread peace in the world... more and more people, who sent hate messages, will cancel their message on second thought, and less people will cancel messages of love.

I thought about this idea, and thought it would be great if we would have something like this in the real world. How often do we do something, only to regret it  later, and wish we could turn the clock back 30 seconds and act differently?

When I was growing up in Israel, there was a custom that 2 weeks before the High Holidays, we would make sure to ask all our friends for forgiveness in case we hurt them in the passed year. This custom is widespread among many communities, both at my religious school and with my non religious friends.

There was some kind of special feeling in the air, that asking for forgiveness kind of, puts you back in time and puts you on a higher spiritual level, just as you were before your wrongdoing. After asking your friends for forgiveness, the asking for forgiveness from G-d during the High Holiday prayers was much more pure.

This is an amazing thing, and looking back, I miss it. It wasn't just some childish innocence, but it was the truth which was expressed through the innocence of a child, who took this so seriously

So, technically, Google took a human idea and translated it into the virtual world. At the moment it only allows you to turn back 30 seconds of time.

Judaism teaches us, that we have the opportunity, especially in the month of Elul, before the High Holidays, to turn back the wheel from the last 12 months.

It is in our hands!

Rivky and the children join me in wishing you a Shabbat Shalom,

Rabbi Chaim Drukman

Ps. If you can't figure out how to use the new feature in gmail, I'll be happy to give technical support :)


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