MAKE MORALITY ATTRACTIVE
by Rabbi Michoel Gourarie
Recently some friends got really upset with me suspecting me of doing something wrong which I hadn't actually done. I am very comfortable within myself knowing that it is untrue and that I am completely free of any wrongdoing. I have been totally misjudged. How much effort do I need to invest to convince them of my innocence?
The driving force of our daily behaviour should certainly not be based on boosting our approval ratings. The foundation of our existence should be to pursue a lifestyle that is moral, meaningful and filled with purpose.
On the other hand there is a Jewish principle that encourages us to tale into account the impression we are creating. This concept is called "Marit Ayin".
Each of us has a mission and a goal to achieve throughout our lives. That mission is to fill the world with morality, goodness and holiness. The Torah is the moral compass that provides us with the formula and the code to achieve this purpose.
But we also have a responsibility to inspire and influence others. Part of our obligation is to attract others to the moral path that we live by. Part of our mission is to demonstrate to others that the code works and the theory can be applied in practice and create meaning, purpose and happiness.
It is for that reason that the great sage Rabbi Yehuda taught:
Which is the right path that a man should choose for himself? That which is honourable to himself and brings him honour from man.
So stay focused on what is right but try to make it obvious to others as well.