Torah.org Home Subscribe Services Support Us
 
Print Version

Email this article to a friend

The Way of G-d"

Part 1: "The Fundamental Principles of Reality"

Ch. 3: "Humankind"

Paragraph 6

Indeed, Adam and Eve's gross misjudgment caused a vast and central change in the cosmic reality. For while humankind was to have been comprised of a body and a soul with commiserate leanings toward either righteousness or wrongfulness; and whereas each person was to have been evenly drawn toward both, and given the ability to choose righteousness and align himself with the soul overall and achieve eternal perfection as we’d learned above, that changed when Adam and Eve sinned 1.

Their having chosen wrongfulness affected themselves, us, and the world to a frightening degree 2.

Notes:

1. See Da’at Tevunot 40 and 126 for an analysis of Adam and Eve’s status before and after their sin, and what would have happened had they not sinned.

2. Let's not cluck our tongues at them, by the way, and be surprised at how "asinine" they must have been, for they are us. We, too, settle for something that seems to be good at the moment, but which clearly proves not to be that in the end. We accept that in ourselves, simply because we're "merely human" and "imperfect", as we put it. Yet, they too were merely human -- in the manner in which we depicted it -- and proved to be imperfect; and they too thought they were right. It would thus obviously do us well to step back the next time we're faced with a moral choice.

Nonetheless they erred, and as a consequence of it the original equibalance of good versus evil tipped toward the side of evil. And it became easier to err, and harder to rectify.

Evil took on a life of its own, it began to grow accustomed to the power it had attained, and has since become entrenched in the world. What would have seemed clearly wrong now seems de rigueur, normal, and just part of human nature. And it has therefore become much more difficult to choose to be good; much harder to abandon our faults and earn perfection.

And whereas once all humanity would have needed to do was to conquer its own tendency for wrong and go on from there, now it must work twice as hard as a consequence of Adam and Eve's cosmic error. It must not only fight its own battles and win -- it must also fight Adam and Eve's. This is the crux of the human condition.


Rabbi Yaakov Feldman has translated and commented upon "The Gates of Repentance", "The Path of the Just", and "The Duties of the Heart" (Jason Aronson Publishers). His works are available in bookstores and in various locations on the Web.


 
Sell Chometz Online







ARTICLES ON KEDOSHIM AND THE OMER:

View Complete List

What's an Omer?
Rabbi Yehudah Prero - 5755

Don't Take it to Heart
Rabbi Eliyahu Hoffmann - 5760

In the "Judging Business"
Rabbi Yisroel Ciner - 5760

Looking for a Chavrusah?

Naturally! (Not)
Rabbi Eliyahu Hoffmann - 5766

Holy Reality Check
Rabbi Berel Wein - 5761

Encouraging His Children to Climb
Rabbi Label Lam - 5772

ArtScroll

In Hillel's Footsteps
Rabbi Yaakov Menken - 5760

In Pursuit Of Holiness
Rabbi Pinchas Winston - 5761

Faith Healer
Rabbi Yochanan Zweig - 5773

Frumster - Orthodox Jewish Dating

“Letter to my Son Akiva” (born 10 years ago, on Erev LAG B’OMER)
Jon Erlbaum - 5771

The Fundamental Rule
Rabbi Eliyahu Hoffmann - 5758

Self-Love: Is it Self-ish?
Rabbi Eliyahu Hoffmann - 5761

> "What Does God Say?"
Rabbi Pinchas Winston - 5770

The Third Rail
Rabbi Yaakov Menken - 5764

Orlah: Spiritual Barriers
Rabbi Osher Chaim Levene - 5767

From the Profanity of Profanities
Rabbi Label Lam - 5767



Project Genesis

Torah.org Home


Torah Portion

Jewish Law

Ethics

Texts

Learn the Basics

Seasons

Features

TORAHAUDIO

Ask The Rabbi

Knowledge Base




Help

About Us

Contact Us



Free Book on Geulah!




Torah.org Home
Torah.org HomeCapalon.com Copyright Information