You are Your Own Teacher
Holocaust diaries and chronicles in English, נחלת הכלל,

75 years ago, today, he was murdered in the Holocaust. Rabbi Kalonymus Kalman Shapira did not leave any descendants, but he left a magnificent educational legacy. Here is just one gem from the worldview that he presents in his book, “The Students’ Obligation”:

“It is not enough to teach the boy only that he must obey his teacher and that’s it. The most important thing is to place in his heart this knowledge, so that he should know that it is he, the boy himself, who is his own main teacher. It is upon him that G-d placed this duty to raise and educate himself to become a big tree, the tree of life.”

This is a change in the rules of the game, both for the student and for the teacher: the responsibility moves to the student. The role of the teacher is to help the student understand that. Only this way can the young person develop his character:

“It is a law in man’s mind, that when he has someone to rely on, he relies on them, rather than on himself. But when he becomes aware that the duty is upon him, that he himself is his own guide and teacher – he will make an effort and will not be negligent.”


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סיון רהב-מאיר

Sivan Rahav-Meir is a media personality and lecturer. Married to Yedidya, the mother of five. Lives in Jerusalem. She works for Israel TV news, writes a column for Yediot Aharonot newspaper, and hosts a weekly radio show on Galei Zahal (Army Radio). Her lectures on the weekly Torah portion are attended by hundreds and the live broadcast attracts thousands more listeners throughout the world.
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