Mar 30, 2014


Leiby Burnham was a guest lecturer for a retreat in Yosemite.  There were three photographers on the trip who were eagerly after the best shots at all hours of the day and night.

He learned three major life lessons from them:
1) When you truly love something, nothing is too difficult.
There was no task too hard for them because they LOVE photography and were willing to work 200% harder for a shot that would be only 2% better.

Lesson: Instilling love for Hashem and mitzvos is the goal.  Many of our frum society's "issues" would melt away if we were successful at this.

2) They sat down each night to strategize the next day's photo shoots.  They had only a limited amount of time and they wanted to make sure they got all the shots they needed.
Lesson: We only have a limited time here on Earth and need to maximize the time.

3) Many of us take pictures but these professionals were obsessed with the details.

Lesson: As Burnham put it, people often wonder, does Hashem really care about my kavana, about how I remove pits from cantaloupe on Shabbos? Isn't Yiddishkeit mainly about connecting to Hashem? Are we losing the feeling and passion in the details?
The truth is, Hashem does care about the details, because He wants each of us to create a masterpiece.  (And here's a point that Burnham makes so well:) Leonardo da Vinci didn't paint the Mona Lisa by just focusing on the "spirit" of the painting.  Motzart did not create masterful music by just thinking about the feeling behind the music; he meticulously worked on every single note.  L'havdil, Hashem gave us clear instructions for so many of the details because passion and love are great but mastery is in the details.

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