Translation by Yehoshua Siskin
In this week's Torah portion, when Adam is created, it is written: "And God said, 'Let us make man in our image, after our likeness.'" When it comes to God, what is "Let us make" all about? Isn't God one of a kind, all-powerful, and not in need of assistance? For thousands of years, our commentators have tried to answer these questions.
Regarding this verse, Rashi comments that God is teaching us proper conduct, that we must act with humility. "Let us make" is written because God sought counsel from the angels before He created man so that the angels would not envy this new creation, who was made in their likeness. Although, in truth, God alone created man, and even though the words "Let us make man" are bound to cause confusion, an important guideline for living is being conveyed : Even the greatest individuals benefit from consulting with those of lesser stature.
In this context, our creation was a cooperative venture that gave honor to the idea of showing generosity and sensitivity towards others, regardless of their status. During a week in which we read this in the Torah, we can adopt for ourselves a mission of taking others' feelings into account in pursuit of our goals. We need to be there for others -- not through "sharing" with them on social media, but rather through allowing them into our lives: to listen to our children, for example, and to give them the feeling that their input matters as we make decisions about their future; to consider the opinions and the ideas of those who work for us and to make them feel significant; to relate to everyone cooperatively, no matter if they are lesser than us in some way, by acting in a manner that is beneficial to them.
"Let us make man"; let us consult with one another. With such an attitude, the possibilities of what we might create are endless.