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  • Writer's pictureMarilyn Saltzman

“Mussar-izing” Commercial Slogans

Last weekend, Super Bowl advertisers paid $7 million for a 30-second spot with the hope of making their brands and slogans memorable to millions of viewers. It made me think of famous commercial slogans and how they could be interpreted through the middot (soul traits) of Mussar (Jewish ethics).

Can you hear me now? Verizon

Middah: Rachamim (compassion)

“The soul trait of compassion may be more accurately defined as the inner experience of touching another being so closely that you no longer perceive the other as separate from you.” Alan Morinis, Everyday Holiness

You’re In Good Hands. Allstate

Middah: Emunah (faith)

“The body needs air. What is the air of the soul? Faith.” Rabbi Eliyahu Lopian

What happens here, stays here. Las Vegas

Middah: Bitachon (trust)

“You shall not go about as a talebearer among your people.” Leviticus

Since we’re neighbors, let’s be friends. Safeway

Middah: Chesed (loving-kindness)

“As it is written, ‘be loving to your neighbor (as one) like yourself,’ therefore one must sing his praises, and show concern for his financial well-being, as he would be for his own well-being and as he would for his honor.” Maimonides

Open Happiness. Coca Cola

Middah: Simcha (joy)

"The appointed seasons were given to Israel for no other purpose than for them to enjoy themselves. The Holy One said: If you enjoy yourselves [this year], you will do so again the following year, as is said, when thou keepest this ordinance in its season, then from year to year: - you will be given the opportunity to do so from year to year." Tanhuma, B'reishit 4

Because You’re Worth It. L’Oreal

Middah: Kavod (honor)

“Giving Kavod is a creative act. Ideally it flows from a recognition of the holiness of the other…Each person’s soul is different. What might seem like Kavod to one person may be insulting to another…The more we refine our own souls and know our own value, the easier it becomes for us to value the other.” Rabbi David Jaffe


Just do it. Nike.

Middot: Zerizut (enthusiasm) and achrayut (responsibility)

“You are not obligated to complete the task, but neither are you free to desist from it.” (Pirkei Avot 2:21)

My conclusion: Soul growth…priceless.  (Credit to the old Mastercard commercial)




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1 Comment

Feb 18


Your cleverness knows no bounds. I am energized by your Mussar-izing.


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