Al Chet 5

Exploring the Al Chet Prayer
Al Chet 5
by Rabbi Shraga Simmons

5. For the mistake we committed before You in public and in private.

Ask yourself:
Public:
Did I do foolish or degrading things to attract attention or approval?
On the other hand, did I do good deeds in public -- that I would otherwise not have done -- simply so that others would see me?

Private:
Did I act privately in a way that I would be ashamed if anyone found out?
Did I consider how God is watching even in my most private moments?
Did I convince myself that because nobody sees me, the mistakes somehow don't count?

Al Chet 5

 The 44  Roots of Mistakes
by George Brock

5.   For the mistakes made before You in public and in private....

  • Doing foolish or degrading things to attract attention or approval.
  • Doing good deeds in public that one would not have done had others not been watching.
  • Doing things in private I would be ashamed of if anyone found out.
  • The battle is fear.
  •  The cause is that the fear of man and the fear of missing out has become greater than one’s fear of G-d.
  •  The victory is to fear One!  Fear no one.
  • Fear of others and the fear of missing out remind us to fear G-d.
  • Fear leads one away from contentment though it promises just the opposite through its lust and evil desires.
  • Only through Teshuvah can one overcome his forbidden lusts and desires.
  •  The goal is that one can pass though one’s “darkness”- the mistakes made before G-d, in public, and in private - when one realizes one has made his own path.
  •  Is it not better to seek the light one has been given than the darkness one will create?
  • There is only one Torah yet is it not the light that reveals the path each man must follow.
  • It is one’s choice, not chance, that determines one’s destiny.
  • I must remember it is the righteous man’s faith that becomes his strength and his obedience that becomes his power – not so with the wicked man whose faith becomes his weakness and whose disobedience leaves him powerless.
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