Never Marry That Boy

Why do so many women make such bad mistakes about men? Some date purposelessly, often wasting far too much time on a man who will never marry them.  They devote themselves endlessly to men who as boyfriends make them miserable, and who as husbands would make them even unhappier.  Ever confident of their ability to transform commitment-phobic-rogues into devoted husbands, they lavish endless love on callous losers.

While men make more than their fair share of mistakes, this lamentable catalog lists the main mistakes women make.  Why?  Because by and large women intuitively and profoundly believe in the power of love.  What is more, they are entirely right to recognize that God conferred erotic attraction with almost limitless capacity to motivate and inspire men.  Ancient Jewish wisdom actually teaches that were erotic attraction to be obliterated from the world, all achievement, accomplishment, progress and creativity would cease.

This then begs the question: if so many good women love these males, why don’t they respond?  Why are women so often disappointed?  Why does their love fail to transform these men?   The answer is because they are not men!   A good woman’s love only motivates and inspires men; it does nothing for boys.  Bestowing love and devotion on a boy is something only a mother should do.

Thus to answer the question with which I opened this Thought Tool, “Why do so many women make such bad mistakes about men?”  They don’t.  The only error they really make is to mistake boys for men.  Not knowing how to tell the difference, women waste their love on boys.

What then is the best way to tell the difference between men and boys?  Happily ancient Jewish wisdom provides the answer that for generations, has guided women into happy, fulfilling and durable relationships with real men.

The second chapter of Genesis containing so much wisdom pertaining to male/female relationships, culminates with this climax:

Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother and cleave to his wife and they shall become as one flesh.
 (Genesis 2:24)

Although the context of this verse is the archetype marriage of Adam and Eve, its intent is to define every marriage everywhere and anytime in terms of helpful and practicable parameters.  Allow me to impart to you how ancient Jewish wisdom explains each phrase in this verse.

Therefore shall a man: What follows is unique to men.  It is irrelevant to boys.

leave his father: Leaving his father means that part of becoming a man is acquiring financial independence.  If a male is not earning his own living or at least far along in a deliberate and realistic plan to spend only what he himself earns, he’s not a man.

and his mother: Leaving his mother does not mean cutting off a relationship with his mom.  What it does mean is that a man is no longer emotionally dependent upon his mother.  He prefers to have her approval but doesn’t need it.  He honors and loves his mother and respects her opinions, but he makes up his own mind and can gently but firmly help his mother understand his emotional independence.

and cleave to his wife: Only now, with both financial independence as well as emotional independence is he a man and ready to cleave to a woman and make her his by marrying her.

and they shall become as one flesh:   This conclusion to the verse announces that only with all the preceding four conditions met, this fifth and final step, physical intimacy and erotic connection should now occur.

Not knowing these things is the reason women make mistakes about men.  Please note that I have three resources designed to increase both men and women’s abilities to choose the right mate, handle male-female interactions wisely prior to marriage (and in the years before being ready for marriage) and then establish a joyous home. You, or someone you know, really needs one, two or all of these resources. Please take a look at the books, I Only Want to Get Married Once and Hands Off ! This May Be Love and the 2 audio CD set Madam, I’m Adam and make your choice.   Acquiring these tools will help you or someone you care about. Your doing so also will help me create more resources helping us all understand God’s blueprint for reality.

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The Law of Leadership

Pete was promoted to a new position of authority over the department of which he was previously a part.  He was concerned that his former team members would fail to recognize his new role.  He asked me if there were any lessons in ancient Jewish wisdom about gaining and retaining the respect of others.  I explained that the key was self-restraint and that he could no longer join in the company’s “Fun-Friday” high jinks as he used to.  He would need to be extra diligent in exhibiting self-respect.

Wise parents instinctively do this all the time.  They know that they have to behave with dignity and self-respect in order to develop in their children a natural respect for them.  This is the Scriptural passage I teach in order to illustrate this point.

The book of Exodus opens with one of the most perplexing puzzles in Scripture.  How could King Pharaoh forget all that Joseph had done for Egypt and turn against Joseph’s family, the Israelites?

Genesis 41 describes how God helped Joseph achieve prominence.  Joseph’s foresight not only saved Egypt from a seven year drought and famine but also transformed Egypt into the regional power of the time.  People came from everywhere to shop for food in Egypt.

When the patriarch Jacob died, so revered was he that the Egyptians mourned him for seventy days. (Genesis 50:3)  When Joseph died, he was such a symbol of national prestige that the Egyptians would not allow him to be buried back in the Land of Israel where his father lay.  Instead he was buried in Egypt.  (Genesis 50:26)

One would have expected the powerful feelings of gratitude and warmth towards the descendants of Jacob and Joseph to have lingered for a while. Yet, quite astonishingly, by the eleventh verse of the new book of Exodus, we discover that the Jews are already being discriminated against, taxed, and oppressed.

What brought about this unprecedented hostility towards the Jewish citizens of Egypt?  Ancient Jewish wisdom identifies a clue in this language:

The Children of Israel were fruitful and swarmed and increased and became very, very strong and the land was filled with them.
(Exodus 1:7)

If some of the phrases seem a bit redundant, that is because in Hebrew, the Lord’s language, each conveys additional information, teaching that added responsibility accompanies added success.

Fruitful = God gave the Israelites the blessing of large families.

Swarmed = Unfortunately, these large families weren’t meticulous in their behavior, instead behaving obnoxiously like rodents for whom the term ‘swarm’ is usually employed.

Increased = As a result of their talents and abilities, they achieved prominence and influence.

Very, very strong =  Unfortunately, they began throwing their weight around rather than remembering that they were guests in the land.

Filled with them = As a result of the above conduct, despite being a minority, they nonetheless seemed to be everywhere and in control of everything.

Joseph saved Egypt and was highly venerated.  Then all of a sudden a new king persuaded an entire grateful nation to oppress the Jews?  Yes, indeed, provided that the Israelites abandoned the principles, the ethic and the idealism of the once respected Joseph.

Had the Jews remained true to the values that Jacob and Joseph instilled into them, Pharaoh would not have feared them.  Had their values not eroded, his attempts to persuade his people would have been futile.  The Egyptians no longer identified the Jews they knew with the Jacob and Joseph of their legends.  Their respect for Israel vanished.

A key to earning, gaining, and retaining respect of others is to exhibit control of our impulses in how we eat, speak, work and play.  It is one of the most important lessons of leadership whether at work or in the family and one that needs constant attention.

Many other equally effective tools for life await you in our special Biblical Blueprint Set.  This set of five audio CDs, sale-priced right now, is a powerful program for experiential enhancement and includes more than twenty tips, tools, and techniques for transforming your social, financial, family, and faith lives.  I’d like you to bring this significant set of spiritual strategies into your life and into the lives of those for whom you care.

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Me, Me, Me!

This fellow I know runs a struggling consulting business.  The advice he delivers is of high quality–I know because I have consulted with him once or twice.  Yet he struggles.  He agonizes about his lack of success. He is proud of his professional competence but is baffled by his competitors who vastly outperform him financially, though his skills and experience are superior to theirs.

Obviously there could be many reasons to account for his lackluster growth.  Maybe he makes mistakes in his marketing or perhaps he should adjust his pricing but these are relatively easy to fix. This fellow has worked on that yet he continues to fail.  And I know why.  But he’s never asked me so I’ve never told him.  Unsolicited advice is seldom welcome.

I know what his problem is because he unknowingly reveals it to me.  In casual conversation he has often said things like this: “You know that builder friend of yours, do you think you could get him to do me a favor?”  Or this: “At that birthday party I attended last night I met a lawyer with whom I hit it off; I think his wide range of contacts could help me.”  Even this: “Remember you suggested I look up Mr. Jones while I was in Chicago? I did and I can’t see what good he could do me.”

Not once has he ever said to me, “If you ever encounter a struggling entrepreneur whom you think I could help, call me and I’ll help him pro bono.”  Or, “I looked up Jones as you suggested and I’d really like to help him. Do you have any idea of what the best way would be to do so?”  In other words, this fellow sees the world only in terms of how it could benefit him.  He sees his connection with the world as a great big pipe with a one-way valve ensuring that goodness and abundance only flow inbound.

At first glance, this would appear to be sound business strategy.  Focus on getting rather than giving and evaluate people only in terms of what they can do for you.  However, nothing could be further from the truth.  Our behavior shapes our personalities and, with the passage of time, it also sculpts our faces.  Sure enough, to my eyes, this fellow has, in the last few years, acquired an unappealing self-centeredness.  He seems even less interested in me, my family, and my life than he used to be.

God designed His world to incentivize us to be obsessively preoccupied with the needs and desires of His other children.  He does so by bestowing upon us the enormous blessing of financial abundance in proportion to how many of His other children we please and how significantly we please them.  Most of us prefer being pleased by people who at least appear to be as interested in our needs as they are in their own.  When I encounter a sales professional who radiates only self-interest I take my business elsewhere.

One way to make our personalities and faces radiate a pleasing effect is to engage in regular acts of giving.  Each evening as we privately perform our daily self-evaluation, we ought to make certain that we devoted ourselves just as much to giving as we did to getting.  That includes not only time, energy and resources but also love, recognition, and attention.

Ancient Jewish wisdom teaches that every strength comes with a parallel weakness.  For all the strengths and advantages the oldest sibling acquires, he also should be extra vigilant about becoming overly self-centered.

You might remember the story from Numbers chapter 32 when, upon the eve of Israel’s conquering the Promised Land, the tribes of Reuven and Gad requested to settle on the east side of the Jordan River where they had encountered excellent grazing for their animals. Moses reacts quite angrily, accusing them of abandoning their brethren as the tribes approach the impending war for the land of Israel,

Once the two tribes explained that of course they meant to settle in Transjordan only after helping fight the war of acquisition, Moses was still not placated.  He remained critical of them.

What bothered Moses?  They betrayed their true interests when they told Moses that they’d build enclosures for their animals and cities for their children before joining the war alongside their brothers. (Numbers 32:16)

When Moses responded, he reversed the order, pointing out that their priority ought to be their children, not their wealth.  (Numbers 32:24)  Children are one of the primary vehicles God uses to train us to become happy givers.

Moses was well aware that the two tribes involved were first born sons. Reuven was Leah’s first born son (Genesis 29:32) and Gad was Zilpah’s first born son (Genesis 30:10-11).

Moses recognized the negative tendency of egotism which can infect the first born who has a stint as the ‘one and only’ child. He can be prone to self-centeredness and self-centeredness tends to isolate us from other people.

A few years later, Joshua berated these two tribes (Joshua 22) because they built their own altar to God instead of joining in worship with their brothers in Jerusalem.  Their eventual comeuppance was that they were the first tribes to be exiled when Israel was later attacked by her enemies.

The regular practice of giving stimulates awareness of and connectedness with others.  If the fellow I know would learn this truth, immediate and tangible benefits would flow to him as they would to all who follow God’s plan for human economic interaction.

I would like to give you an incredible sale price on two life-changing books and three hours of audio CD. Invest in my Income Abundance Set and gain insights such as the one above. If you already own it, may I suggest flexing your giving muscle by gifting the set to someone who this resource can help lead a more successful life, both spiritually and financially.

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IncomeAbundanceSet, March 2014

 

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Welcome to the Upper Class

Some Republican politicians shock me when they make statements like these.

“My tax plan will benefit the working class.”

“We must show how much we care for the poor.”

“It’s not only the rich who’ll benefit…”

“We don’t have to worry about the upper class.”

“Crime is concentrated among the lower class.”

By adopting the language of Karl Marx they surrender to socialism.  Socialism’s core belief is secularism whose paramount doctrine is that there is no God directing humanity; no God decreeing morality.  Socialism insists that all you see around you is materialism and it owes its origins to nothing but unaided, random physical and chemical processes.  It follows that every human being is little more than about $9.50 worth of common chemicals cunningly arranged. A little carbon, some oxygen and a dash of hydrogen; throw in some potassium, nitrogen, and a few other elements, and bingo! You’ve got a person.  This is the central organizing principle of secular fundamentalism.

What about hopes and dreams?  What about inspiring memories of great ancestors?  What about selfless love and devotion?  All of that is nothing but biological determinism.  Perhaps you mistakenly think you’re drawn to charity, compassion and altruism but it is nothing more than a few neurons firing in your brain creating illusions whose entire purpose is only biological survival.  You are no more than a cat, a cow, a kangaroo or a camel.  You are an animal.  You may be smarter than some animals. You may have less hair than some animals. You may run slower than some animals but you run faster than others.  They eat, defecate, mate and die.  So do you.  You are just another species of animal.  That, in a nutshell, is the sacred sacrament of socialism.

Naturally, if you are an animal, you need either a zookeeper or a farmer to whom you belong.  He will take care of you and you owe him all your productivity.  The center of your existence is not the ‘G’ of God but the ‘g’ of government.

Rich and poor have specific meaning in the Bible and do not define anyone’s essence.  Unlike animals, humans are touched by the finger of God and can grow.  Animals have only a present.  Unlike anteaters and zebras, we have a past and a future as well.  Was the pitiful tycoon, Howard Hughes, living a lonely and paranoid existence really rich? Is the young and underpaid medical resident working 12 hour shifts and sharing a tiny apartment with three other doctors-in-training, really poor?

A goldfish without enough food can be thought of as poor.  A mouse living in a grain warehouse can be considered rich.  But those terms do not apply to humans.  For humans those terms are relative.  No matter your finances, you can easily find someone with far less than you as you can find someone with far more.  Look one way and you can feel rich, while a glance in the other direction can make you feel poor.

As for the term ‘working class’ just who is that supposed to mean?  Almost everyone I know goes to work five or six days a week and that includes most of the super-successful people I know.  Most heirs to large fortunes as well as those bequeathed significant trust funds work hard in various enterprises.

As for the terms upper class and lower class, most politicians use them as synonyms for rich and poor respectively.  This sheer nonsense is predicated entirely on the underlying belief that humans are just like any other livestock.  Upper class horses race, lower class horses pull wagons and get turned into glue.  Upper class bovines breed while lower class buffalo pull ploughs.

The truth is that none of these terms apply to humans.  There is a very good reason why the Bible opens with the words:

In the beginning God created heaven and earth.
(Genesis 1:1)

rather than:

In the beginning God created everything.

or, if you prefer the poetic:

In the beginning God created the entire universe and all that is in it.

Ancient Jewish wisdom explains what the words ‘heaven’ and ‘earth’ teach us that would not have been conveyed by ‘everything’ or by ‘the entire universe.’

Heaven means the spiritual attributes of reality while earth refers to the physical.  God is teaching us right from the very outset that the world is both a physical and a spiritual reality.  There are things you can measure in a laboratory like food and water, and there are equally important things you cannot such as love and loyalty.

We humans, created in God’s image are chiefly distinguishable from animals by our ability to know the spiritual.  Indeed, our lives would be painfully incomplete without it.  Most of the important decisions and choices confronting us every day require us to weigh spiritual implications as much as we evaluate the physical.

I delve into this informatively and entertainingly in this special episode of my new podcast.  If you have any desire to learn how to include spiritual factors in the decisions you make you should click here and listen for free now.

Oh yes, as for upper class and lower class, what do they really mean?  Upper class people, regardless of their bank balances, are people who honor their past and plan for their future.  Lower class people, regardless of their riches, live only in and for the present.  Having abandoned every vestige of self-restraint, they succumb to every momentary urge and condemn themselves and their unfortunate offspring to utter hopelessness.

Please help a few young people that you know step onto the escalator that will lift them to the upper class.  I ask you to do so by giving them a copy of Hands Off! This May Be Love. This is one of the most important books we have published and especially in the climate surrounding young adults today it provides food for thought that is indispensable for the shaping of a successful life.

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Do the Wright Thing

If you’re trying to build a business, sustain a marriage, raise children or if you’re engaged in any other long-term challenging project, there is a lesson to be found in the story of flight.

It was the fall of 1900;  Wilbur and Orville Wright were living in a tent on the barren windswept sand dunes of Kitty Hawk, North Carolina, about 75 miles southeast of Norfolk, Virginia and about 200 miles east of Raleigh, North Carolina.  Today you can easily drive to Kitty Hawk via the concrete Wright Memorial Bridge, but the Wright brothers had to take a hazardous two day sail in a leaky old schooner from Elizabeth City on the Pasquotank River.

Once there, everything was a challenge.  They constantly worried about their business and their father and sister back in Dayton, Ohio.  Drinking water, food, and supplies were hard to come by. The wind repeatedly demolished their tent.  But of course the wind was why they were there in the first place.  Each time their primitive gliding machines were damaged, they meticulously rebuilt them.

At that time, it was positively assumed that flying was impossible. Even the Washington Post categorically declared that, “man cannot fly”.  That was all there was to it.  The Wright brothers were surely engaged in a fool’s errand.  Traveling backwards and forwards between Kitty Hawk where they tried to fly and Dayton where their bicycle business needed attention, they struggled with failure after failure for three long years until they finally flew a heavier-than-air machine for the first time in human history on December 17th, 1903.

One can but imagine the countless disappointments, frustrations, doubts, and worries that must have plagued Orville and Wilbur year after grueling year.  They were alone, neither brother having married. They didn’t even have a coach, let alone a therapist.  They were mocked for their dreams and for their determination.  Yet there is no record of the brothers having suffered from depression or even from periods of melancholy.

Let’s see if we can understand the Wright brothers’ emotional equilibrium by traveling further back than a mere 110 years ago.  The first person who suffered from sadness was Cain.

…and Cain was very angry, and his face fell.
(Genesis 4:5)

Cain was the first person in history to think of bringing God a present.

…and Cain brought a gift to God from the fruit of the earth.
(Genesis 4:3)

He was quickly imitated by Abel who did the same, bringing his gift from among his sheep.  God approved of Abel’s gift but rebuffed Cain’s.  Consequently, Cain was very upset.

God immediately asked Cain what was bothering him.

And God said to Cain, ‘Why are you upset and why is your face so down?’ 

(Genesis 4:6)

Now that is a very strange question for God to have asked Cain.

Cain surely should have responded: “You ask why I’m upset?  You ask why I’m feeling down?  Isn’t it obvious to you, Lord?  I’m miserable because you rejected my gift even though I was the first to think of bringing You an offering!  That’s why I’m upset.”

With such an obvious answer, it is a strange question for God to have asked.  Even stranger is that Cain does not supply that obvious answer.  In fact, Cain says absolutely nothing in response to God’s question.  So God continues talking to Cain who seems to ignore Him and heads off to do away with his brother.

Ancient Jewish wisdom explains God’s question by explaining that the only time God permits us the indulgence of despair and sorrow is if there is nothing at all we can do to change our circumstances.  Under all other conditions, God prefers that we set about solving the problem causing the gloom.

…the Israelites lifted their eyes and saw the Egyptians chasing after them and they were frightened and cried out to God.
(Exodus 14:10)

And God’s response?

And God said to Moses, why do you cry to me, order the Children of Israel to march forward.

(Exodus 14:15)

The Israelites were scared and dispirited as they stood impotently on the shores of the Red Sea watching their foes draw nearer.  God permits them no emotional weakness or passive hand-wringing.  Instead, God directs them to take action to solve their problem.  This they do.  They start marching into the Red Sea and in response, God splits it.

One might have thought that one occasion when unmitigated sadness is allowed is during mourning. Yet ancient Jewish wisdom stresses that even then, after a short period, we should focus more on extolling the memory of the deceased than on immersing ourselves in sorrow.

The Hebrew word for ‘mourner’ AVeL is the same as the Hebrew word for ‘but’ AVaL.

                                                                                                                        אבל              אבל

mourning           but

Even mourning has a time limit and an intensity limit.  We might be in mourning, BUT the memories are good.  This is the end of everything, BUT life continues.  How can I continue living without that person?  BUT you can.  Even in the sorrow of mourning, after an appropriate interval, we are expected to reintegrate ourselves back into what is now the new normal of life.

It all becomes clearer now.  God asked why Cain was miserable because He expected Cain to do something about it.  God expected Cain to look into his heart and understand why his gift was rejected.  Cain should have taken the necessary steps to right his relationship with God and all would have been well.  God even gave him hints of how to accomplish this.

…if you behave better, you’ll be accepted…

(Genesis 4:7)

Like so many of us, Cain was immersed in his feelings. Rather than changing himself, he disastrously struck out at his brother.

The Wright Brothers succeeded by responding differently than Cain. They reacted to each setback, not with anguish but with action.  Each failure propelled them not to heartache but to exertion and effort.  So whatever grand life challenge we find ourselves engaged in, our response to setback and failure should not be a retreat to passive and self-indulgent sadness.  Positive action is the antidote.

If I may be personal for a minute, it was quite a blow when KSFO cancelled my top-ranking radio show in exchange for paid programming. I quickly researched alternatives and began broadcasting at WC4Y.com, adjusting to a very different type of show. I appreciate more than you can know, those of you who followed and stayed with me through technical and other difficulties. Having made my own efforts, God has now blessed me with a new opportunity, a podcast on the Blaze radio. I hope you will enjoy my new podcasts. In celebration, we put our Library Pack PLUS on sale right now. Save over $25 on this incredible package of twenty-three illuminating and entertaining resources full of action tips for a better life.

LibraryPackPlus with BSB, April 2014

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