Parshas Noach

The wonderful revelation of the great Rabbi and leader the Chasam Sofer:

Why earth chose to betray her mission to bear pant & vegetation to the world?

 

Bezras Hashem

Dear brothers and friends.

Since we don’t have enough words to thank HKB”H the giver of the Torah that gave and continues to give us life health and wisdom to begin a new cycle of the yearly mamorim on the parshios of the holy Torah, let us begin with the beroche: Boruch ato Hashem elokeini melech haolom shehecheyonu vekiyemonu vehigionu lazman hazah. We pray and beg him to give us the wisdom in the zechus of his heilige kinderlich to dig and explore new depths of understandings of his endless Torah.

In this week’s mamar for parshas Noach we discuss about the Mabul, that not only wiped out all Humans and animals, except for Noach his children and the animals he took into the Teivo, but also punished the earth as Rashi says: “the upper three tefochim of the soil, corresponding to the depth that a plow’s blade enters the soil, were also dissolved and washed away”. The Midresh explains the reason for this, because the earth too betrayed her mission to provide the entire universe with proper plant and vegetation and gave instead thorns.

We explore the wonderful revelation provided to us by the great Rabbi and leader the Chasam Sofer, who explains why the earth did what she did. Based on the deep teaching of the great mekubel the Ariza”l about how HKB”H created the world with the intention of connecting the cycle of life that contains four stages: Earth, Plant and Vegetation, Animals, Humans. The first stage of the cycle is Earth giving life and berth to Plant and Vegetation. The second stage of the cycle is Plant and Vegetation giving life to Animals who eat it. The third stage of the cycle is Animals, kosher ones, giving life and energy to Humans.

All four contain “nitutzei Kedushe” – sparks of holiness, who crave to climb up the spiritual ladder of the worldly cycle, until they get to the top and become part of the human race, who have the gift and power to do mitzvohs, to learn Torah and to pray to HKB”H. The earth possesses the desire to give of herself and employ her potential and energy to bring forth plant life and vegetation. Only in this manner, can the earth, which is part of the lifeless universe, ultimately elevate and rectify herself to the classification of humans, because when man consumes animal flesh, which has been nourished from vegetation, which have been nourished from the earth, the holy “nitzotzos” climb the spiritual ladder from her low status to the kingdom of mankind who is capable of speech, of praying and learning Torah. All the more so, when man consumes plants and vegetables directly, the “nitzotzos” trapped in the motionless world are released and transformed into the form of mankind with the powerful tool of being able to converse with Hashem the creator of the world.

During the generation of the flood – “Dor hamabul” however, all of creation had become corrupt, and there was no avenue for the holy “nitzotzos” trapped in the earth to elevate themselves to the level of humans. In fact, quite the opposite was true. Creation used the nourishment and resources available to corrupt their natural ways. As the earth became aware of this sad reality, she saw no purpose in producing nutritional grains. Rather, she ceased to contribute her resources, and instead of wheat produced only thorns.

Nevertheless, according to the Chasam Sofer, this refusal of the earth to contribute her resources properly still constituted an act of betrayal. As we know, Hashem commanded the earth during the process of creation (Bereishis 1, 11): “Let the earth sprout vegetation of plants bringing forth seed, trees of fruit yielding fruit. Although the earth’s intentions were honorable and for the sake of Heaven — prompted by the widespread corruption that had consumed all of creation — nonetheless, she was dutifully bound to fulfill this original command and not to get involved in HKB”H’s arrangement.

This my dear brothers and friends, is only the beginning of a wonderful journey that reveals a fascinating view and understanding of how HKB”H connects the wonderful four stage cycle of the world. So chevre let us fulfill our part of the cycle by using all that HKB”H created to spread the word of Hashem and his Torah in the entire universe.

May we all have a wonderful and sweet Shabbos.

Pinches from Yerushalayim

~  For subscription to the  weekly newspaper “Hamachne Hachareidi” email news@hamachne.com. ~

~ Click the link below for the full English translation ~

Parshas Noach 5772

Translation Noach 5772

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Chag Hasukkos

Shlomo Hamelech’s great wisdom in putting
contradictory statements about the world in Koheles

 

Dear Chaveirim.

For Chag haSukkos we have an interesting philosophical Torah mamar concerning megilas Koheles written by the smartest of all people Shlomo Hamelech. This is due because of the minhag that the great Posek Rabbi Moshe Iserlin, in short Ramo, brings the minhag that we read Megillas Koheles (Ecclesiastes) on Shabbos Chol Hamoed Sukkos. The Magen Avraham explains that this is because these are days of happiness and as it says in Koheles (2,2): “ולשמחה מה זו עושה”  “What does joy accomplish?” The Avudraham explains, that every Sukkos Klal Yisruel gathered by Shlomo Hamelech, as it says (Melachim I 8,2): ויקהלו אל המלך שלמה בירח האתנים בחג”“They gathered before King Solomon – every man of Israel – for the festival of Sukkos”. At this gathering Shlomo Hamelech read Koheles to them, this is the reason we continue to do so.

The Chachomim wanted to hide Koheles

In honor of the upcoming Yom Tov of Sukkos, let us look at another reason to read Koheles on Sukkos, based on the Gemara (Shabbos 30:) : “The chachmoim sought to conceal the Book of Koheles because they saw contradictory statements in it. And why didn’t they conceal it? Because it both begins and ends with words of Torah”. What are examples of contradictions in Koheles? It says: “Anger is better than laughter”, but earlier it had said: “Of laughter, I have said, it is praiseworthy”. Another example of a contradiction, in one place it says: “So have I praised joy”, but in another place it says: “And of joy, I have said, What does it accomplish?” The Gemore explains, that these are not contradictions; “I have praised joy”, refers to the joy associated with a mitzvah and when it says, “And of joy, I have said, What does it accomplish?” this refers to joy not associated with a mitzvah. This teaches that the Divine Presence does not rest upon a person when he is gloomy, lazy, in levity, through ridicule, through idle conversation, but only through the joy associated with doing mitzvos.

The obvious question is: Why did Shlomo, the wisest of all men write in a way that we have to resolve the contradictions, why not just write it clearly so that it should not even appear that there are contradictions?

We introduce an explanation: This world is full of contradictions between the way the world operates and what should be our Emunah, our belief in the way Hashem runs the world. One of the basic tenets of our belief is the concept of reward and punishment. Yet we see that Reshaim, evil people, seem to prosper. Moshe himself, asked Hashem (Shmos 33,13): הודיעני נא את דרכךmake your way known to me”. The Gemore in Beroches explains that Moshe was asking Hashem to answer the eternal question of why we see that the righteous sometimes suffer and the evil sometimes prosper.

So it is vital for us to deal with the question: Why did Hashem create a world which seems full of contradictions, with more things hidden than are clear, a world in which Hashem’s children are downtrodden and our enemies appear to rule the world. The whole world seems contradictory to Torah. The answer is that, Hashem deliberately created a world, where nature appears to hide His light, so that humans should have the free will choice to decide if they want to see Hashem who is hidden in our world. If we recognize Him and serve Him, we are rewarded; but those who deny His existence and live only in the world as it appears to them will be punished. Our world is called “עולם” , which comes from the word “העלם”, or hidden, because if Hashem’s presence were clearly revealed there would be no choice but to believe in him, thus removing the possibility or rewarding those who chose to believe in Him.

Hashem’s final creation was human beings who are imbued with the intelligence to understand the operation of the world and with the ability to resolve the apparent contradictions of the world and to believe in Hashem, reaching the ultimate truth that Hashem runs the word according to His will, as Dovid Hamelech declared (Tehilim 104,24): מה רבו מעשיך ה’ כולם בחכמה עשית – “How abundant are your works, Hashem, with wisdom You made them all.”

In light of all this, let us try to understand why Shlomo Hamelech put in so many apparently contradictory ideas into Koheles. It appears to me that Shlomo Hamelech did this purposefully, to teach us that the world is full of contradictions. Shlomo Hamelech refers to himself throughout Koheles, as וראיתי אני – “I have seen”, as if to say, I, too, had questions and worked to resolve them, so too you will have to resolve for your selves what appears to be contradictions.

This gives us a new insight of what Shlomo Hamelech wrote in the third chapter of Koheles listing 28 “times’, 14 good and14 bad:

לכל זמן ועת לכל חפץ תחת השמים, עת ללדת ועת למות, עת לטעת ועת לעקור נטוע, עת להרוג ועת לרפוא, עת לפרוץ ועת לבנות, עת לבכות ועת לשחוק, עת ספוד ועת רקוד, עת להשליך אבנים ועת כנוס אבנים, עת לחבוק ועת לרחק מחבק, עת לבקש ועת לאבד, עת לשמור ועת להשליך, עת לקרוע ועת לתפור, עת לחשות ועת לדבר, עת לאהוב ועת לשנוא, עת מלחמה ועת שלום.

“To everything there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven: A time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up that which is planted;  A time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up; A time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance; A time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together; a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing; A time to seek, and a time to lose; a time to keep, and a time to cast away; A time to rend, and a time to sew; a time to keep silence, and a time to speak; A time to love, and a time to hate; a time for war, and a time for peace”.

Shlomo Hamelech was using this to teach us the essence of the wisdom of Koheles, we have to know when to cry and when to laugh, when to speak and when to be quiet, when to love and when to hate, when to use each of 14 “times” for good and when for bad.

Shlomo Hamelech read Koheles on Sukkos, because that is a time of joy, when we realize that our entire existence on this world is only temporary. So he focuses our attention on the questions and contradictions so that we will endeavor to find resolutions to the questions by realizing that this world is only a temporary existence to prepare us for our permanent residence.

By overcoming our questions, we can merit the eternal existence that will be ours as we will sit in the the glorious Sukkah made from the skin of the great Livioson

A chag sumaiach to all of beis Yisroel.

Pinches

~  For subscription to the  weekly newspaper “Hamachne Hachareidi” email news@hamachne.com. ~

~ Click the link below for the full English translation ~

Translation Sukkos 5772

mamar Sukkos

 

Yom Kippur

BS”D

Dear Chaveirim.

I want to wish you all a Gemar Chasime Tove and a good gibentched year.

Have an easy fast and remember to davven with great simche for the great opportunity Hkb”h gave us to wipe out all our debts and sins. Great tzadikim said: The entire month of Elul; the 2 days of Rosh-Hashone; aseres yemei hatshuveh and Yom-Kipur itself, all is only a preparation to one possuk in the end of Neilah: “Shemah yisroel hashem elokeinu hashem echod”!!!

So let us all say it with the greatest kavone possible accepting kaboles ol malchus shomayim.

Pinches

יום כיפור עב

Translation Yom Kippur 5772