The philosophy of World Class runner Beatie Deutch seems to dovetail with a radical new take on an ancient precept of tithing mentioned in this week’s Parsha. Not only should we tithe from our produce and income, we should tithe from our talents. Midrash Tanchuma (Re’eh:12:1) says that, for example, if God gifted you with a beautiful voice then show your gratitude by volunteering to lead the prayer services. If God gifted you with great looks, you should resist the immoral expectations and vanity that society may try to impose upon you.
American born Israeli runner, Beatie Deutsch, was chosen this week to star in the Adidas’ “Impossible is Nothing” campaign. The way she is describing her motivation for success (in a TOI article) sounds suspiciously like “tithing from talents.”
“Here I am teaching Judaism through sport,” she says, explaining that by dressing modestly while running and still juggling the laws of Judaism, she shows people that you can be an observant Jew and still compete at the highest level. “My ultimate goal in life is to share the beauty of Judaism and impact people to spread light in that way because I did not dream about being an athlete, ever. “