The ONLY perspective that breeds SUCCESS!
How often have you not achieved something because you told yourself: “I can’t do it”? To what extent does our own thinking contribute towards the achievement of our goals?
When Moses sends the 12 tribal leaders (known as the ’12 spies’) into the ancient Land of Canaan he gives them basic mission guidelines as to what they should look out for and report back on. Ten of the Spies bring back a negative report and only two report back in a positive light. From a superficial reading, they all achieved their mission. They reported back on what they saw. Yet the people were influenced and subsequently demoralised by the reports of the Ten Spies. They lost faith in G-d’s assurances of deliverance and, ultimately, were punished. The question that begs to be asked is this: Why has history criticised the Ten Spies for fulfilling their mission and reporting back on what they perceived?
The Ten Spies did not fail their mission because of what they had seen. They were punished because they sowed the seeds of failure into the minds of the people by feeding their insecurities as to their own abilities and self-worth. They added to their report their own negative conclusion by saying “We are not able” to conquer this land. Had they returned with the exact same findings and said to the people.. ‘you know, this is what we saw, but there’s got to be a way! We’ve just got to figure out how’.. all would have been fine. But they didn’t. They told the people ‘we can’t do it. It’s too difficult, there’s no way, etc’. In short, they substituted the ‘how do we do it’ with ‘can we do it?’
Does this perspective resonate with you? How often have you told yourself this exact excuse? And I bet it’s never helped in achieving your goals and attaining success, right?
What this Parasha can teach us is that if we wish to grow in life, we must train ourselves to see the obstacles in life not as road blockages, but rather, as stepping stones towards our own growth and as the fuel to our success.
Rabbi Yossi and Chana Raizel Friedman