Monday, August 22, 2011

Where to Find Real Treasure

One of the most intriguing mystical teachers of 18th Century Judaism was Rabbi Nachman of Breslau. He, like many mystics before and after him wrote fascinating parables. One of his most well-known goes as follows. A Jew in a small village had a recurring dream that there was a treasure buried under the bridge in front of the royal palace in Vienna. At first he tried to ignore it, but finally he could no more. He packed a bag and a shovel, and made the journey to the capital. Of course, digging right in front of the palace proved to be a challenge, to put it lightly. All he really could do was survey the area day after day, till he aroused the suspicion of one of the guards, who asked him what on earth he was doing. The man told the guard the whole story, upon which the guard had a very unexpected response. He snorted and told the man that he too had a recurring dream that under the stove in the home of a Jew in a far away village was buried a treasure. Did that mean he would make the journey all the way to that village and try to dig it up, all because of a dream? With that he shooed the man away, who with a smile on his face did not seem to mind, since the home the guard had described was his! He went home, dug up the treasure, and lived happily ever after.

The lesson of the parable is simple yet profound, and is one Sarah and Matt are teaching us too. Many of us seek our treasure away from home; this is only natural. It is also true that we often find that the treasure we seek is not out there, but in the very place we came from and the relationships we formed there. Sarah and Matt embody this truth. These are two individuals who enjoy very close relationships with their family and friends. They know that their treasure is found in all of you who are here today, so much so that they chose to celebrate the most important day of their lives in the very home where Sarah grew up.

So, Sarah and Matt, thank you. Thank you for reminding us of this important truth. May you continue to treasure each other and your families, and through this find genuine happiness.

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