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Friday, November 4, 2016

Lesson of Noach (Noah) Being Socially "Inept" can be Good

Genesis Chapter 6

9These are the generations of Noah, Noah was a righteous man he was perfect in his generations; Noah walked with God.טאֵ֚לֶּה תּֽוֹלְדֹ֣ת נֹ֔חַ נֹ֗חַ אִ֥ישׁ צַדִּ֛יק תָּמִ֥ים הָיָ֖ה בְּדֹֽרֹתָ֑יו אֶת־הָֽאֱלֹהִ֖ים הִתְהַלֶּךְ־נֹֽחַ:
Noach, just like the rest of us, wasn't perfect, but he stood out from his neighbors because he did the best he could to follow Gd's will. Noach was different from everyone else, and so were his descendents.

Unlike in the stories of Abraham and Yona, Noach didn't argue with Gd, and Gd didn't instruct Noach to warn the other people, ask them to repent. This is a very serious difference. Even though many years/centuries had passed since Gd created man,  Noach was still in the earlier generations, and maybe there was a genetic difference in Noach from the others of his generation.
11Now the earth was corrupt before God, and the earth became full of robbery.יאוַתִּשָּׁחֵ֥ת הָאָ֖רֶץ לִפְנֵ֣י הָֽאֱלֹהִ֑ים וַתִּמָּלֵ֥א הָאָ֖רֶץ חָמָֽס:
12And God saw the earth, and behold it had become corrupted, for all flesh had corrupted its way on the earth.יבוַיַּ֧רְא אֱלֹהִ֛ים אֶת־הָאָ֖רֶץ וְהִנֵּ֣ה נִשְׁחָ֑תָה כִּֽי־הִשְׁחִ֧ית כָּל־בָּשָׂ֛ר אֶת־דַּרְכּ֖וֹ עַל־הָאָֽרֶץ:
13And God said to Noah, "The end of all flesh has come before Me, for the earth has become full of robbery because of them, and behold I am destroying them from the earth.יגוַיֹּ֨אמֶר אֱלֹהִ֜ים לְנֹ֗חַ קֵ֤ץ כָּל־בָּשָׂר֙ בָּ֣א לְפָנַ֔י כִּי־מָֽלְאָ֥ה הָאָ֛רֶץ חָמָ֖ס מִפְּנֵיהֶ֑ם וְהִנְנִ֥י מַשְׁחִיתָ֖ם אֶת־הָאָֽרֶץ:
14Make for yourself an ark of gopher wood; you shall make the ark with compartments, and you shall caulk it both inside and outside with pitch.ידעֲשֵׂ֤ה לְךָ֙ תֵּבַ֣ת עֲצֵי־גֹ֔פֶר קִנִּ֖ים תַּֽעֲשֶׂ֣ה אֶת־הַתֵּבָ֑ה וְכָֽפַרְתָּ֥ אֹתָ֛הּ מִבַּ֥יִת וּמִח֖וּץ בַּכֹּֽפֶר:
While the others were more connected and socially/emotionally dependent on each other, Noach was a loner, maybe even a bit "autistic" socially inept or oblivious to what was going on. That is what kept him away, made him immune from the perversions of society.

Noach wasn't what's called in Hebrew ראש גדול Rosh Gadol, Big Head or one who sees steps ahead and takes the initiative.
22And Noah did; according to all that God had commanded him, so he did.כבוַיַּ֖עַשׂ נֹ֑חַ כְּ֠כֹ֠ל אֲשֶׁ֨ר צִוָּ֥ה אֹת֛וֹ אֱלֹהִ֖ים כֵּ֥ן עָשָֽׂה:
What Gd commanded, Noach did. No questions asked. Being "Socially Inept" is a safety valve. It saved Noach and his family. He was attuned to Gd and not to society.

At present the State of Israel and the Jewish People can use some of that "ineptness," lack of focus on what the world wants. We should just be focused on what Gd is commanding us, because our Salvation will only come from Gd Almighty and not from the nations of the world and their perverse values.

Shabbat Shalom
Am Yisrael Chai


Anonymous said...

Beautifully said. Obsession with being like the nations is dangerous for us.
Shabbat Shalom.

Batya said...

Thanks, Shavua Tov

Shiloh said...

A wise person learns from all. Take what is good from the Nations, like those with manners, like those have respect for others. Talking with kiruv rabbi's, they admit and know that halachah does not address some of these issues nor teach our Nation about it. But we are too arrogant to learn from others when our own derech has been corrupted. Thankfully the coming messiah will bring the redemption to the World, taking what is good from them and disposing what is bad from us all.