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Rav Avigdor Miller on Passing Up On Your Bashert

Q:Can a person pass up his basherte? I mean, is it possible for a person to let go of an opportunity for marriage that was ordained by Hashem?

A: Now that’s a question that many people are confused about. Let’s make it clear that it’s up to you to use your free will. Hakodosh Boruch Hu is not going to interfere with the principle of bechira just because He chooses a mate for you. Which means that many times when a man was young and marriageable he met a dozen bashertehs that he passed up on. Not just one; a dozen! In the olden days, if a man was wealthy enough he could have married a whole dozen. Surely one you could have married.

But he let the years go by and now he is much older and he cannot get the same young girls as before. And it’s even a big question if he’ll get a woman who is capable of childbearing. That man has surely passed up his basherte.

Later, when he marries an elderly girl – maybe she’s a nice girl but she’s too old to have many children. Now the truth is she is also a basherte; it’s not just one that is ordained for a man. A man can be ordained a number of women. And therefore it’s up to a man to utilize the opportunities when the opportunities come; his free will makes him responsible for passing up opportunities.

And while we are on the subject I want to tell you that it’s a tragedy for people to wait; nobody should postpone marriage even one more year. And in case he’s passed the time when he can get a girl who is capable of children, so he should marry an elderly woman. He should marry an elderly woman! Be married! Don’t be by yourself. That’s why in decent Jewish communities in the olden days, it wasn’t permitted. Every man had to have a mate and every woman was expected to be mated.

And any marriage, you should know, is better than no marriage. Even a mean wife or a mean husband is better than no wife or no husband. It’s a tragic error to think otherwise; only that people are following the evils examples of the misguided masses and they look for divorce as an alternative. Divorce is not an alternative; the grave is a better alternative. Better to be married to someone you don’t like than not to be married at all. I know it doesn’t sound good today, but it’s the plain truth.

And therefore, when we speak about basherte, don’t be misled. Like somebody said, it’s important to seek the right person in marriage, but it’s even more important to be the right person. So when you’re married, make up your mind, no matter who your mate is, the big question is who you are going to be.

When you get married you have to be married through thick and thin, no matter what. You’ll stick by your partner forever! You want to be buried side by side in the cemetery. And you’ll go to the next world side by side.

You’re not perfect, she’s not perfect. She’s not perfect, he’s not perfect. Nobody is perfect in this world. And it’s silly to aspire to perfection, to finding the perfect mate. Of course before you’re married you can choose — and someday I might give a lecture what to look for, bli neder – but once you’re married, it’s done, it’s final, and you have to be loyal not matter what until the end of your days. Do the best you can. And for that you’ll get Olam Haboh.

TAPE # 583

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