Be among the disciples of Aaron:
Love peace and pursue peace;
Love all fellow creatures,
And bring them near to the Torah.
Discussion Guide [1:12].
Psychologists have pointed out that when we feel threatened we tend to over-personalize and think
in black-and-white. We feel the other person is out to get us, and his interests are totally at odds with our
own. This reaction regularly sabotages effective problem-solving and cooperation with other people, and
In your personal life, the last time you were criticized or had a personal conflict, did you escalate from
defensiveness, or did you try to find a cooperative solution to the problem?
If someone attacks you verbally,
do you think it is ever legitimate and wise to counterattack? When?
Making peace between a man and his fellow [is one of]
the things which a man enjoys the fruits of in this
world, and which remains as a stock of merit for him for the world to come. (Shabbat 127a)
Have you been involved in a situation where you were making peace between two sides? Did you use effective
negotiation techniques? What happened?
Is your country following Hillelís policy of loving peace and pursuing peace?
Is the current government of
Israel following Hillelís policy?
How do these countries balance the pursuit of peace and self-defense?
Recently there is hot controversy over what constitutes conversion for modern Israel, and over the Reform
view that a child of an intermarried Jewish man, raised as a Jew, is Jewish.
What do you think Hillel would
say today about these controversies?