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In Parshat "עֵ֣קֶב Eikev" (Deuteronomy 7:13-11:25), so many questions are generated throughout the text. 

Key phrases that include words like "IF and FORGET" can render the question, "What causes mankind to FORGET G-D?" or "Can you create a society that is capable of defeating customary laws of growth and decline of civilizations?    

Strangely, the meaning of "עֵ֣קֶב Eikev" combines two words,  "IF" and "Consequence."  And human history is replete with the if and the consequence of choice.  

Let's examine Rabbi Sacks' question, "Can you create a society capable of defeating customary laws of the growth and decline of civilizations?" through the lens of IF and FORGET. 

If a society can defeat the normal historical patterns of the rise and fall of civilizations, "how would it do it?" "How does one defeat the decline of civilization?" 

"How do you create a society that will never grow old?"  

Moshe Rabenu answers these questions in Parshat Ekev. And He begins with the word "IF."

First, Moshe reiterates what G-D reveals as the root cause of a civilization's decline, AFFLUENCE—the outcome of being overtaken by the Blessings of Hashem.  Subsequently, he tells us how to avoid the curse of affluence when one FORGETS G-D. 

In the attached video, Rabbi Sacks' presents three categories of action that create a failsafe civilization. 

1. Foster a collective conscience, identity, and responsibility. Never forget who you are and where you came from and why you share a fate together. 

2. Create a society with collective justice and the rule of law. Where people feel that everyone is behaving responsibly. Everyone  -- provision for people who are poor and everyone has dignity. 

3. Recognize a power greater than yourself. Always remember that it is G-D who led you to where you are, and it is G-D that you have to serve. 

Consider that, in the long run, the only alternative to serving G-D is serving yourself. And when a society is full of people serving themselves, it ceases to be a society.  

Check out  Rabbi Sacks' insights on the Parshat Ekev: 

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