Carolla,Cain and Abel

To be right up front, I didn’t know who Adam Carolla was until this morning. I do now. His interview rant against the Occupy Wall Street crowd has gone viral. Having listened to it I can understand why. It’s a no-holds-barred-expletive-riddled diatribe on where we’ve gone wrong as a society. But for me, it’s the last line Carolla utters that’s worth a follow-up.

Allison Rosen, the interviewer, closes with the observation, “So it’s like global sibling rivalry” and Carolla responds, “That’s what it is. It’s as old as the Bible.”

Enter the consciousness, and the reference point, we need to have about where we are. I am always a bit surprised when I hear someone say that there is no “playbook” or “manual” for living life. Of course, there is. It’s just that most people don’t like some of the advice (or “rules” if you like) and so they dismiss the work in its entirety.

The Old Testament, or Torah as I know it, sets forth the problem and sets it forth early. Cain and Abel. Isaac and Ishmael. Esau and Jacob. Shoots from the same stalk yet one envious of the others portion. Envious to the point of a willingness to destroy…and greedy to boot.

Carolla is right, but for his poor choice of vocabulary. Look around and what you see, from the “99%’ers” to the Islamist terrorists, to the multinational and agri-corporations is envy and greed. More is never enough, it seems. And if someone has “more”…even if they have attained it rightfully through just means and hard work, well…then let’s just destroy them and what they have. It’s positively Biblical in origin. Fortunately, so is the solution.

Do not covert anything that is thy neighbors.

We are all born with our “portion.” It makes no sense, and is an egregious waste of time, to resent someone else for theirs. Make the best of yours. Be grateful for what you have, accepting of what is, joyful for the gift of life, and enthusiastic for possibility. Gratitude, acceptance, joy and enthusiasm negate envy and greed.

Then, with all that spare time formerly used to begrudge and destroy, go about bettering yourself and the world around you. It’s a much better strategy. By the way, that strategy is in the manual.

“Behold I have placed before you today that which is life and that which is good; that which is death and that which is evil… And you shall choose Life, in order that you and your children shall live” [Devarim/Deuteronomy 30:15-19].


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