The rabbi told me we needed to bless my son on his becoming a Bar Mitzvah, so, my voice trembled as I gave him this blessing:
My dearest child:
You are a young man now.
Where does the time go?
And you have your own mind about things. I remember when you were 6 years old and you said, “I have to disagree with you, Emom”. And I said, “no, no, I don’t think that ever needs to happen.”
Well, you are a young man now.
NOW, you can disagree with me, but you will still be WRONG.
I admire so much in the person you are already and three things in particular that I think will form the person you will become:
Your insatiable curiosity and quest for learning about people and the world – near and far, existing and ancient. From the Mughals of Middle Age India to today’s German Muslims learning about the Holocaust.
From every fact I never knew to every one I have already forgotten.
Your boundless imagination – it is a place where the impossible is routine and miracles happen. You are able to see the world in ways unconstrained by the so-called common wisdom and societal strictures.
You see unending possibilities where others see insurmountable road blocks.
Your gentle heart – this is truly the treasure of you.
It is what makes you, you.
Yes, you will have your own mind about the world, and it will be guided by your curiosity, imagination and heart.
May they guide you on a meaningful life journey filled with joy, with wonder, with hope, with laughter and with peace.
I love you more than you can ever know.