Questioning Questions
by Aaron Lessner

*The following was emailed to me by an Aleph in Central Region West#45 named Aaron Lesner. The views and opinions further mentioned do not reflect those of “The Dead Aleph’s Society” or myself. I just thought it’d be nice to get some Aleph input on the blog!

To begin, I must tell you that everything I am about to say is completely true, nothing has been altered, or exaggerated. As I recount this to you all, please keep your minds open, and if you’re going to zone out, or talk, it would be best for you to leave the circle.

One day, as I was walking home from a local AZA business meeting. My feet were really hurting since I had been walking in moccasins. I thought why am I even wearing these moccasins? This thought soon dissapeared as though, as I could only ponder what other Alephs in my chapter would be like in ten years? Would they wear these same moccasins if I recommended them? Would they carry on our valued traditions and glory?

Then I started thinking larger…Will the order of the Aleph Zadik Aleph, NO, BBYO as a whole be completely different? What can I do with my time left here? More importantly, what am I supposed to do with my life? Who am I? Why have I been placed in such a fruitful life, when others are worse off then me? What purpose do I have to question the order of things? We are all going to finish BBYO, head to college, get a job, maybe have a family, and live out our lives in quiet comfort. No questions asked.

As I continued my walk, and these thoughts traversed my conscience, I felt something. Suddenly…. I felt something lift me up. It was as if I were a toddler and my mom was picking me up from underneath my arms! What kind of sensation is this? (pause) Then, I noticed something. I was hundreds of feet above the ground, birds whizzing by head as I ducked out of the way. I was going faster and faster and faster, clouds whirling by! Airplanes with disgruntled parents trying to shut their baby up zoomed by in the blink of an eye! Soon there was no clouds, there was no sky…but I kept climbing higher and higher into the abyss of space. (pause) Then, it stopped. As I floated in space, I turned around to notice that there was something peculiar. Could it be? Yes, it is, and the only thing I could ask myself was, “WHAT THE HECK IS A MEGAPHONE THE SIZE OF TEXAS DOING FLOATING IN SPACE!!??”

I gently glided towards the object, where I then proceeded to flip the on switch. A slight buzz could be heard, and there, right under the switch was a little plaque. It read, “With this megaphone, you can say only one word to every human being on Earth, and they will not only hear it, but will apply that word to their life.”

At first, I thought this isn’t the kind of power you should be giving to a guy like me. I could shout out, “Chill!” but everyone would only move to the arctic. I could say, “Live!”, but live for what? Live for life? I mean what would you ask?

Well then it hit me. Though most of the things you may say are good intentions, I realized that this could only be my word. I placed my mouth near the speaker and shouted at the top of my lungs, “QUESTION!” Then there was silence. It didn’t end and it seemed to last forever. Then, off in the distance, I could hear something.. Whispers, just slight, a handful of people maybe. Each one of them responding, “Why?”

Why? Why! Why should we question our lives, our purpose, our identity? Though these questions may be ones of mystery for the majority of your life, what is truly important is not the answer. You could ask a million questions, and get a million answers for each one, but it’s a testimony when one question, just a single sentence, can spawn MILLIONS UPON MILLIONS of ideas, beliefs, thoughts, and possibly, further questions! Do not be afraid to ask questions, because there is nothing more irrelevant than an answer to a question nobody asks.

So, what are you going to do with your life? Life is not the predestined path you may have thought it was. You are questioning it, yourself, the concept of what it means to have a happy life. Excuse the slight tangent, think about this. If you take a year off after high school, you wont regret being 60 and only working for 35 years as oppose to 36. Life is not like a car wash track, where once you step on, you are locked in to your direction for the duration of your life. Use the time you’ve got here! ESPECIALLY, if you use some of that time to truly soul search, question your purpose, or even use that time to travel to Israel, or places all across the globe in the hopes of exploring where you come from, where you are going, and find places where you can ask your questions!

Think about this! How much do you really know? When you are asking a question, is it truly to find a real meaning, or is it simply to attain a temporary answer? Out of all my years I’ve been in school, and in BBYO, I have been “learning” information, yet I find it fascinating how little information I can actually retain, while memories and important questions have remained with me my entire life. We have been stuck in a place where we are limited to only seeking the answers, when what we should be striving for are the questions! Therefore, we MUST train ourselves to ask questions about the important things in life! We must do so in order to define our world, our beliefs, and more so, to define ourselves!

You may be asking, “If asking questions are the most important things in life, then why don’t most people ask most of the questions that they have in life? Or to put it upon ourselves, WHY DON’T I ASK ALL THOSE QUESTIONS ABOUT LIFE, AND THE MEANINGS THAT I DON’T UNDERSTAND ABOUT IT!” Is it because we’re too embarrassed to ask? More often than not, it isn’t just you who is scared to ask! Everyone in this group is asking questions in their mind, but they’re too worried about the embarrassment of perhaps not having a “good question.” Don’t let your ego drive your life, or you’ll end up turning back in a few years and wondering to yourself “had I only thought about this stuff earlier.” Sometimes, people just don’t know how to ask these questions. Just putting a bunch of words together and having a question mark at the end doesn’t make it a question! “Type ball in horse with?” IS NOT A QUESTION! Neither is, “Can G-d make a blue stick that is really a green car while existing in a box and not really existing?” That is NOT a question. It is just garbage, made to sound fancy! Don’t let society’s grasp on what a question is dictate how you ask your questions! Use your ablitiy to observe…with your eyes, your mind, and all of your senses to articulate what you don’t understand.

Finally, ironically enough, most of you here may not want the answers. “You want the truth, but you can’t handle the truth!” The truth is that most people believe they’re in the honest pursuit of an answer, definitive proof, but the in actuallity, they’re scared to find out the answers. “What will happen when I die?” We cannot know for certain, and this scares us, so we stop questioning. WE CANNOT LET THIS HAPPEN! The minute we stop questioning things we will have no purpose to exist. We will have nothing that differs us from each other, NOTHING WILL DEFINE US!

As you all try to grasp this, and I am sorry if it went over a few heads, but I was slowly being lowered back to the surface of earth. The clouds were white, “Why?” The birds flew by, “But when?” The arms lifting me up were still invisible, “Who are you?” The questions I ask myself in life are only to understand who I am. Not to attain an answer! This is not 2+2 folks! We are not a fact, our thoughts are not dates in history, and our questions certainly can’t be concocted in a chemistry lab! Once you learn to question the things around you, can you truly understand the world, BBYO, family, school, war, and life. Use these questions, as tools to better yourself, to define yourself. Don’t let your voice be left unheard, and don’t ignore your questions either—for they may be the only thing that allows you to grow in a modern day society.

And even though all these thoughts did in fact run through my mind, it is sad that I didn’t take it to heart. I thought to question, “What has just happened? Why has it happened to me?” “What lesson should I take from this? When I walked into my house, my mom looked down at my feet and asked, “where are your moccasins?” And I realized they had fallen off in the ordeal. All I could say is, “Why did I have Moccasins in the first place?”

Best regards,
Max F. Baer’s Ghost

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My name is Max F. Baer and my book is Dealing in Futures.

Buy this book, it is the Bible/Torah/Quran of BBYO knowledge, and history. Do you, and your Order a favor; read this book, get smart, and be able to understand the inner-workings of the organization. The first step towards having any change or any say in this “youth-led” organization, is for you all to get educated, and present yourself in a manner that suits that newfound epiphany of BBYO experience.

I also would like to welcome anyone to this blog, and to continue the support of the brother BBYO blogs being formed. For all members joining, please do not hesitate to show any articles, statements, or posts to your chapter, region, any international members, advisors, regional directors, field “supervisors”, and the Adult Board. I am sure they would love to hear all of our insight and opinions on the matters concerning the B’nai B’rith Youth Organization. I wish you all the best of luck, and remember, this blog is not only for informal discussion on matters of the Order, but also use it as a means of asking for the help of your fellow BBYOers and BBYO Alumni in any matter: whether it be chapter recruitment, fraternity issues, or if you need help planning an event.

Best regards,
Max F. Baer’s Ghost

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