Vol 25.05 - Noach 2 Spanish French Audio Video
|Hebrew Text: Chumash-Bereshit|
(5744) Rashi (Gen. 7:12): "And the rain was upon the earth". How was the rain ("rains of blessing") on the earth for forty days and forty nights - according to Pshat and Pnimiyut.
The Torah alludes to this potential in the opening verse of our reading:3 “These are the chronicles of Noach. Noach was a righteous man.”
The word noach refers to satisfaction and repose.4 By repeating the word, the Torah implies that Noach and by extension, every one of his descendants can sow these qualities in two different fields, both among his fellow men, and in the spiritual worlds above.
Every person affects his environment. Our thoughts, words and deeds can inspire peace and tranquillity in our fellow men, helping create meaningful pleasure. And by establishing such conditions in our world, we accentuate similar qualities in the worlds above. To highlight our obligation to spread these virtues, this week’s Torah portion is called Noach.5
Being Sensitive to G‑d’s Cues
The resolution of this difficulty underscores the interrelation between the patterns with which G‑d imbued our world and man’s response to them. Noach’s birth was to begin a period of repose and satisfaction that would encompass the globe. Mankind had the option of taking an active part in this undertaking. Instead, each person continued to live with a narrow focus, concerned only with himself. What another person felt, or questions of Right and Wrong, did not matter. And as a result,6 “The world was corrupt… the land was filled with crime.”
Waters of Blessing
The flood waters, then, were intended to be waters of blessing. For the blessing to be manifest, however, mankind had to make itself fit to receive G‑d’s influence, and therefore teshuvah a return to G‑d was necessary. As the rain began to fall, humanity continued to ignore this opportunity, refusing to make such efforts.
But even though mankind did not turn to G‑d in teshuvah, the rains remained waters of blessing.9 The forty days of rain resemble the forty seah of a mikveh.10 Just as immersion in a mikveh is associated with re-experiencing the act of creation,11 so too the forty days and forty nights of rain brought about the dawning of a new age: “Noach saw a new world.”12
Therefore, the waters of the Flood are called “the waters of Noach,”13 because the intent and the actual effect was to bring rest and pleasure to the world. Unfortunately, however, because man did not respond positively, this constructive outcome was coupled with destruction the Flood obliterated every living creature on the face of the Earth.14
Kindness with Purpose
The generations that preceded Avraham treated each other with love.16 Nevertheless, since they “repeatedly angered G‑d,” their conduct did not reflect the repose and satisfaction which G‑d intended for mankind. Therefore He punished them, scattering them throughout the earth.
Avraham performed deeds of kindness and hospitality with a single purpose to make all mankind conscious of G‑d.17 Through his actions, he displayed the desired form of repose and satisfaction, and therefore received the reward generated by all the comradely deeds of the generations which preceded him.18
When the Rainbow Shines
By vigorously following in the footsteps of Avraham, spreading kindness and love, we can help precipitate the coming of that age. And then, like Noach and his family, we will merit the shining of the rainbow. As the Zohar22 states: “The rainbow reflects spiritual secrets…. When you see the rainbow shining with bright colors, wait for Mashiach’s coming.”
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