We commonly say that there are seventy faces to the Torah, but it’s also been taught that there are six hundred thousand interpretations of every passage, perhaps of every one of the six hundred thousand letters of the Torah. We have learned that every blade of grass has its own star which means that every “thing” that has been created receives its own unique and fitting energy of existence and sustained being. This means everything from sub-atomic particles to molecules to things living and inanimate, animal, vegetable, mineral, microscopic or galactic, conscious and also every emotion and thought, all energy and also all that exists beyond our perception or understanding, what we call the realm of the Ein Sof, continuously and eternally receives exactly what it needs. Ultimately, the source of all this energy is God, Adonay Echad, but there are also chains of secondary sources as the Olam, the universe, is interconnected.
The Netivot Shalom, speaking about the Priestly Blessing and the unique bracha which invokes it, commanding it to be given “b’Ahava”, with love, emphasizes the twin roles of giver and receiver in the paradigm of every loving relationship. This means that every vessel, every receiver, every beloved, has a lover, a provider, a source of energy. There is a symmetry, but not one that requires that “one size fits all”.
We are blessed with many teachers of Torah. Not everyone will be able to engage with each and every teacher and that’s fine. A challenge that faces every teacher is to not take “rejection” personally. A challenge that faces every seeker is to not become discouraged when a potential teacher isn’t “the one”. Just as we won’t fall in love with everyone who desires us, and not everyone we fall in love with will reciprocate our feelings, we retain faith that somewhere out there is at least one beshert and there are also the teachers we need. Sometimes we find our match easily, sometimes it’s harder and in ways we’d never expect.
I don’t know what brought me to Seattle or what brought you to my living room or to my bet-midrash. Likewise in cyberspace. But reaching each other is still no guarantee that we’re right for each other. If we are, welcome. If not, let us know without anger or jealousy or disappointment that there is another student, another teacher out there for each of us. And let us celebrate that our Eternal Torah contains room for all six hundred thousand souls of Yisrael.