There are only ten hours left. Ten! How will we use them? Will we make them happy or sad, useful or wasteful, upbeat or depressing? 

I am talking about, of course, the ten hours left to January 18, 2019. These precious ten hours are entirely unique. They've never come before, and will never come again. They'll be here for just ten hours in all of history, and will then be gone forever. 

What will we make of them?

What made me think about writing these words was an evening class about the Holocaust that we had on Wednesday at Chabad. We began the discussion with a Halacha, a Jewish law from the Talmud. The law states that if a besieging army demands that a community surrender one individual, or they will invade and spare no one, we may not surrender that individual. The reason for this is that one human life is priceless, and therefore cannot be put into numbers, with more being more valuable than less. 

We spoke about how the Holocaust was not one tragedy of six million, but six million tragedies of one. Each and every human life snuffed out was an awesome, earth shattering, irreparable tragedy on its own. 

Wednesday also marked a special date on the calendar - we commemorated the Yahrtzeit of the sixth Lubavitcher Rebbe, Rabbi Yosef Yitzchak Schneerson. He passed away in Brooklyn in 1950. His son in law, Rabbi Menachem Mendel Schneerson, succeeded him as the seventh Lubavitcher Rebbe one year later. 

The Rebbes were the pinnacles of the above mentioned attitude, valuing each and every individual as a wholesome entity, an entire world, a complete, invaluable being. They weren't leaders of millions of Jews around the world. They were the leaders of one Jew - a few million times over.

They opened thousands of Jewish centers, catering to communities of hundreds of thousands, and to communities of one. Both with equal importance.

This attitude towards each human being, is also the Torah's attitude towards time. Every minute is precious - its value does not depend on the quantity it finds itself. One minute is precious - and one year is but 525,600 individual minutes, each one unique.

So, back to our countdown (which is now less than ten hours). Each minute is a world unto itself. How will we use them?

Rabbi Avrohom