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The Aaron Hernandez Story and You

Aaron Hernandez had the potential and the opportunity to be one of the best players at his position in the history of the NFL – and instead, he now faces life behind bars without the possibility of parole.

The Aaron Hernandez Story and You

Author, Human By Choice: A Kabbalistic Path to Self Help

On June 26, 2013, Aaron Hernandez, star Tight End for the New England Patriots, was arrested on charges of first degree murder. While circumstances of the killing have not yet been made public, one thing is clear: Aaron Hernandez had the potential and the opportunity to be one of the best players at his position in the history of the NFL – and instead, he now faces life behind bars without the possibility of parole.

The question begs to be asked: How did he get here? Didn’t he realize he had the opportunity that most can only dream about? How could he allow himself to get caught up in such a bad situation? (And this was not an isolated troubled incident).

We find this phenomenon all too frequently with pro athletes.

They have the opportunity of a lifetime – stardom, fame, fortune, and all that comes along with that – and they end up in shady activities and behind bars. And the rest of us are left wondering how they could be so (seemingly) idiotic as to blow their potentially “larger than life” lives on things that seem so small, fleeting and futile.

A proverb of the ancient Kabbalists says, “There has to be a ‘lack’ in the egg in order for there to be a space for the chic to grow.” Meaning, if an egg is “complete” as it is, there is no space for a chic to develop and come into being.

A higher level of being can only come about when preceded by a vacancy in the present level of being. Only then is there the “space” for a new level of being to take shape.

All growth happens this way.

A seed has to rot away and decay before sprouting a plant; muscle tears before growing back stronger than before. Getting to a higher level of being entails abandoning the level that we are currently on – and that means going to the unknown. To a personal abyss. We must give up our old life if we want to build a new life. And since all we know about ourselves is the person we have been up until this point, the thought of leaving that behind can be accompanied with deep feelings of loss or denial of self.

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Rabbi Eliyahu Yaakov
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