Contact Us
A stick man has a decision to make.



Stick Figure Vignette: Parshat Re’eh


Choices: Stick Figure Vignette: Parshat Re’eh

A stick man has a decision to make.
Choice; Choosing, Re'eh

This is a simple one. Little stick guy spends a long time making a pretty obvious choice.

What’s his problem? Why is he having such a hard time with this decision? Is it that he doesn’t believe the signs? I think he does. I think he’s pretty sure that there are terrible, miserable things behind that door. They’re just not real enough to him to scare him.

But what interests me more is what he will do if he chooses the bad door and finds terrible, miserable things there. Will he recognize his own error and try to correct it in the future? Or will he blame the signs, or the doors, or anything else he can think of?

For me, that’s what is compelling about this very short little story, and it’s also what is compelling to me about the verse from the Parshah. We have this set of actions and consequences mapped out for us right there. We’ve probably even tested them a few times. But will I continue to dismiss them as threats, or will I accept that my actions mean something? Of course, as always, I could be wrong about the little guy.

I’d love to hear your version.


© Copyright, all rights reserved. If you enjoyed this article, we encourage you to distribute it further, provided that you comply with's copyright policy.
Join the Discussion
Sort By:
1000 characters remaining
Asher Eimer August 14, 2017

The real good choice is usually harder then the bad choice, because good choice require some hard work.
Side note: ones you turn to the right choice it will become easier for you as time pass by it's just the start thats hard like any new thing in life. Reply

RC Brooklyn, NY August 23, 2012

a second look Reminds me of the Tree of Knowledge... we could have chosen the "good" door and Moshiach would have come right away in the Garden of Eden. But we chose the "not good" door by eating from the Tree which allowed us to do teshuvah and bring more G-dliness into the world over these many millennium. I think it's time to choose the "good" door now! Reply

Anonymous chicago August 20, 2012

This also reminds me of school. I know that if I don't do my work, my teachers and parents will all be upset with me. I don't like it but I haven't been scared enough to get all my work done on time without a lot of thinking, sitting, walking around, and pacing. Stick man reminds me that I if I choose what's better for me, then I will succeed and be a lot happier and so will my teachers. Reply

Irene Glen Burnie, MD USA August 17, 2012

Choices It's easy to follow the good when Torah tells us what is good and what brings curses.

But sometimes Satan shows us things that seem good, and we give in to the wrong things.

Not everything that is evil is written in Torah. And our choices may be wrong.
But G-d doesn't leave us in the bad choice if we repent and turn back to him.
My thought only.

Shalom Rabbi. Reply

Anonymous Chicago, IL August 16, 2012

Choices My reaction to this question is based on my age or stage in life. Choices mean something very different now than they did when I was younger and had many more of them before me than behind me as I do now. Thank you for the opportunity to reflect upon this with your brilliant presentation. Reply

Ephraim Brooklyn August 16, 2012

Brilliant Every second we make this choice Reply

RLP New York August 16, 2012

Goodness is right in front of us. All we need is to turn the handle. And let ourselves in. Yet old habits and past experiences can prevent us from approaching that which is rightfully ours. And we turn to the door of familiarity even as painful as it is. We resist that which we so deeply desire. Taking that step towards our dream, our mission and purpose is right in front of us is all it takes. I choose the door of goodness, as scary at feels. It's my birthright and its yours. Coming? Thanks for this reflective article. One day that OTHER door will be barred up. I can't wait. Reply

Anonymous Madrid, Spain August 15, 2012

What about... What if you choose the good ? Would you be able to help anyone ?

Wouldn't you have much more room to improve the terrible world behind the "bad" door ? Doesn't that give our sticky buddy the chance to transform that terrible world ?

I guess the signs in this history are not clear enough to make the right choice. You can't know for whom are the terrible things you'll find, neither the beauty ones...

I would keep on asking. Reply

RC Riven Brooklyn, NY August 15, 2012

What came up for me when I watched this is that some people are uncomfortable when things are too good. There is a sense of insecurity about it, like, when is it all going to crash. People who grew up in dysfunctional or abusive homes have a sense of familiarity and comfort with misery so to move out of that paradigm is a monumental and frightening choice. Being happy, expecting good and productive lives leaves such a person with nowhere to place his anxiety. Listen, we would jump off a bridge, fast every day, and afflict ourselves easily for Hashem. But be happy? Reply

anonymous israel August 14, 2012

haha thank you so much! this is indeed the irony of human nature...the very obvious consequences that we sometimes choose to ignore, only in order to receive theimmediate pleasure that we are at times not even gaining pleasure from anymore! may hashem bless us all to reach our tikkun and for the world to behave righteussly and kindly to one another. olam chessed ibaney "tzion bitzdakka tipade" the days when all will turn to hashem for help and follow in his ways of chessed and kindness, and righteussnes and truth. thank you for the inspiration. Reply

Related Topics