Respect: A Lesson of Lag B’Omer

April 29, 2021 in Guest Post, Rabbi Greg Harris

This is the fifth week of the month. For Reflections Off the Bimah, the fifth week is a bonus and features thought leaders from throughout the Jewish world and beyond. These special posts give you the opportunity to consider important opinions you may not readily encounter.  Thursday night / Friday is the 33rd day of the Omer (Lag B’Omer).  Below is a 1983 talk from the Lubavitcher Rebbe.  He was speaking to a crowd of families gathered outside Lubavitch Headquarters in Brooklyn.  The entire speech is very long but the lesson I am focused on runs from the start to about minute 07:45.  The Rebbe teaches a lesson of Lag B’Omer.  He tells the children about the students of Rabbi Akiva who did not treat each other with respect.  Due to the pervasive lack of respect, a plague broke out which abated on Lag B’Omer.  Today, there continues to be too much disrespect amongst people. We are weaker because of these divisions. I believe the lesson is for us to act better, be better, and listen with more humility.