Awhile back, I received an e-mail from a friend of mine. In it, she pointed out that we were both single, and she had a plan to fix this. The plan?
To spend some time regularly studying the laws of Lashon Hara, pledging to spend two hours a day not speaking Lashon Hara, in hopes that this would be a segulah to get us married. Then, as a group, the group devotes two weeks to devoting the merit of this learning to that person.
Wait, I'm supposed to try to manipulate my Creator through promising to do something I should be doing already? No, thank you.
Now, I think the whole learning the halachot of Lashon Hara is a great idea. It is something I plan to start doing.
The promise? Too difficult to make a promise about unless I make this promise between the hours of 3:00 through to 5:00 a.m.
Giving tzedaka is a time honored method for bribing God. But this? This makes me sad. Both because it seems to speak of an attitude where God can be bribed and because it seems as though my friend is really desperate about her single state.
Now, however, we're about to hit Tisha b'Av. I think that these Halachot, and those of dealing with others should be learned. Not, because we should try to manipulate or bribe the one who is our Father and King (Dad, I'll do the dishes for a month if I can just...) but because if we cannot treat each other well, then what is the point of this fasting?
Amos: 5: 21 I hate, I despise your feasts, and I will take no delight in your
solemn assemblies. 22 Yea, though ye offer me
burnt-offerings and your meal-offerings, I will not accept them; neither will I
regard the peace-offerings of your fat beasts. 23 Take
thou away from Me the noise of thy songs; and let Me not hear the melody of thy
psalteries. 24 But let justice well up as waters, and
righteousness as a mighty stream.