October 21, 2021 / Mar Cheshvan 15, 5782 • Parshat Vayeira
Issue 689
Dedicated in loving memory of Mrs. Miriam Friedman

Being a Positive Influence

Abraham planted an orchard and opened an inn in Beersheba.
There he proclaimed the name of G-d

Genesis 21:33

Abraham’s inn was the first public institution devoted to the dissemination

of the belief in monotheism and to the ethical behavior that follows from

this belief. By establishing a public institution that challenged the world’s hallowed tenets, Abraham promoted the awareness of monotheism even among people who never actually visited his inn. As its renown spread, Abraham’s inn wielded increasingly profound and broad influence.

Likewise today, the very existence of synagogues and institutions of

Torah study exert great positive influence upon a city simply by the

mere virtue of their presence, over and above the intrinsic value of

the study and prayer that take place within their walls.

—from Daily Wisdom #1