Page 127 - Jewish Book Annual Volume 41

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BEN -HOR IN / ZEVI SCHARFSTEIN
121
His lecture on “P reparing the Hearts fo r Hebrew Education ,”
delivered at the Hebrew Teachers College in Brookline,
Massachusetts, in 1954, concludes with this clearly au tob iog raph ­
ical note:
[The Hebrew lyrical short story writer, Mordecai Zeev
Feuerberg , was told by his father:] “Each Jew is duty-bound
to be a figh ter — a fighter against the evil spirits.” Some­
th ing like this we must now say to ourselves: Not everyone
who holds a brush in his hands and grows a beard is a great
painter. Not everyone who lets his hair grow long and who
wears a bow tie is a poet. Not every one who has a teaching
license in his pocket and holds a textbook in his hand is an
impo rtan t teacher. A Hebrew educator and teacher must
have the divine spark which will make him a fighter for the
Jewish people and for Jewish culture.
Such a fighter was Scharfstein himself. Heir to the ethics o f his
people, he tried building into its schools a competence effective in
speaking Jewishly to Jewish hearts and minds o f the ethics which
inhabit the ir people’s soul. In this effort, which will continue as
long as the Jewish people lives, his voice will be heard and his
memory and his call will endure .