Friday, 14 January, 2022 - 7:44 am

Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different result. At least according to a famous quote that has been attributed to many origins.

Is it really true?

In this week’s parsha Beshalach, the Jewish people have already departed from Egypt. They are finally free. Yet, they suddenly find themselves in a pickle again. This time they aren’t inside Egypt. Nonetheless, they are frightened by Egypt’s menacing threat again. Egypt is chasing after them.

The Baal Shem Tov compared this to a person that is suffering from a malady. He travels from place to place and cannot understand why his troubles keep following him…

The Jews could not believe that no matter where they went, they still were threatened by Egypt!

However, a short while later they were indeed relieved of Egypt – for once and for all.

When the Jewish people realized that even outside of Egypt they still faced the dreadful torture of Egypt – it was the penultimate wake-up call. It’s not the escape from Egypt that will save us, they finally reckoned. It’s our Father in Heaven that will save us. They suddenly turned to G-d in prayer.

They now recognized that when the troubles keep following you, moving on will no longer help. It’s time for a different strategy. It’s time to tackle the root cause.

By turning to the Master of the Universe they addressed the root cause. And, then they were finally rid of Egypt for all time.


We often look for bandages to address the challenges that life throws at us. Sometimes they work and sometimes they don’t.  Perhaps it’s true that it is normally insane to continue the same activity while expecting different results.

But, when we invite a new Partner into our lives, a Partner capable of influencing the root cause of our challenges – we can now expect new results.

Amazingly, the Jewish people did not have any bright ideas when caught between Egypt and the Sea. Except, the grandest idea of all – relying on a new Partner.

Call it insane or call it sacred. It’s sometimes the only path to success.

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