Balancing yourself on someone else’s tightrope. (Tiferes Part V)

There are many areas of existence where balance is desired. The Rambam has a whole list of them at the start of Hilchos Deios. Yet one thing that needs to happen for balance to be meaningful is that it has to leave room for another. Otherwise it’s not real balance, if it’s only about you. A person cannot work on his temper or anger management if he only thinks about his issues, and not the issues of the people he gets angry at. It’s like the person who says, “I have resolved not to get angry today. Everybody needs to behave so that I can accomplish my goals.”

I think people find that if they don’t make it about themselves, and focus on what the other person is looking for, if they get over themselves, then many of their bad middos resolve themselves.

Let me give you an example. Someone has a need to control every aspect of a simcha of some kind; planning a wedding, a bris etc. He thinks to himself, “How can I keep myself in check, and not be a controlling monster to all those involved?” It’s understandable that he will think he’s just got to become a better person, on the inside. And of course that’s not a bad thought. But maybe the solution can be arrived at by thinking, “This is not about me. It’s about ….”


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