"Ideal people who know no backsliding have never existed except as figments of the imagination and of literary invention.
"No Jew, even the greatest leader, saint, or prophet, has ever been free of religious problems, failings, heartaches, and doubts.
"It is an established principle: everyone who takes the religious life seriously and who is thus ever striving onward experiences setbacks along the way.
"It is not merely that 'there is no one so righteous that he does only good and never sins,' but more than this:
"Temptation, doubt, pain, and transgression are the inevitable lot of those who would ascend higher.
"All seekers are not on the same level, and their failings are thus not equally grave.
"A great person who falls back may still be on a much higher plane than others. In both the material and the spiritual realms, 'the righteous man may fall down seven times and yet arise.'
"Though he falls again and again, he continues to grope his way upward.
"This is the strength of the righteous: their ability to endure crisis, to bounce back, and to turn failure into a source of strength.
To fall is a sign that one is making progress
"The falling and the rising and the falling again are indications of an unending conflict within.
"This is important because sometimes a person may feel that his failure or decline is a sign of something essentially wrong.
"To fall is not a sign of failure but rather an indication that one is making progress, that something essential is alive within one, something that, if it is lacking, makes progress impossible and invites the Angel of Death."