A friend gave birth to a baby with a rare condition
that has rendered her severely handicapped. She is not expected to live much
past her tenth birthday. I just can't understand why G-d does that. If life has
a purpose, what is the purpose of such a short and sad life?
Every birth is a gamble. A soul enters the world innocent and pure. But it may
not stay that way. This world is maze of diverging pathways, both good and evil,
and the choice is ours which way we go. Once a soul enters a body, it is free
and therefore vulnerable to corruption. While acts of good elevate the soul,
every act of evil makes a blemish on the soul.
Some souls are so pure, it simply isn't worth the gamble. These souls are too
precious to risk being compromised by life in a body. They are too high to come
down to this world. But the other option, not to be sent down at all, to never
reach this world, would mean that we would miss out on meeting these holy and
lofty souls and hearing their message.
So these souls do come down. But in order to be protected from the potential
evils of an earthly existence, they are sent down into a body that will not
compromise their holiness. They enter this world in a form that is above sin,
above evil. From a purely physical perspective we call them disabled or
handicapped; from the perspective of the soul they are protected. They will
never sin. Their sojourn in this world is often brief, and in terms of this
world may seem sad. But they have retained their purity. And they have fulfilled
These special souls remind us that true love doesn't need a reason. We often
love others for what they give us - we love our children because they are cute,
smart, and high achievers; we love our spouse for the pleasure and contentment
they give us; we love our parents because they care for us. This is love, but it
is not pure.
When a child is born that will never achieve worldly success, cannot provide the
usual source of pride for her parents, all extraneous reasons to love her fall
away and what's left is the purest love that there can be. These children are
lovable not because of what they do for you, and not because of what they will
one day become, but simply because they are.
These pure souls remind us what love should be. Only such a pure and holy soul
can elicit such a pure and holy emotion. We can only stand in awe of them, and
the parents and friends who care for them. And we can only thank them all, for
giving us a glimpse of what true love really means.