Torah.org Home Subscribe Services Support Us
 
Print Version

Email this article to a friend

Da'at Tevunot - The Knowing Heart

Section 7, Chapter 4

1. Few things rankle the human heart more than contradictions, truth be known. And while most of us have learned to accept ambiguity and “fuzziness” by the time we become adults, we’d actually much prefer that our reality be neat, clean, and smooth. But it’s very often not, and that’s especially true of messages from Heaven. For, as we pointed out already, only Moses received blunt and straightforward responses from G-d while the other prophets simply didn’t.

In fact, as Ramchal points out, their visions were sometimes “polar-opposites” of each other, “at one and the same the same moment”. And so G-d would seem to appear angry, mild-mannered, jovial, and more at any particular moment to a prophet (see Soferim 16:2; Yalkut Shimoni, Yitro 286; JT Nedarim 3:2; and BT Rosh Hashanah 27a for other examples) or others such things.

2. How can that be? It’s because their visions weren’t of “the things themselves”, Ramchal explains, but were specifically “prophetic visions” -- figurative rather than literal images of what was going on -- that depended on G-d’s designs at the time. The point is that those visions need not have fallen under any “law” of reality or of nature whatsoever -- including those of the sort of logic and consistency we’re used to.

For, at bottom, each vision was meant to express something about G-d’s otherwise inscrutable ways in the world. And if that called for contradiction or the like, well, then so be it. But don’t think it ends there: there are other daunting things about the prophets’ insights, as we’ll see [1].

[1] For kabbalistic references to this chapter see R’ Friedlander’s note 502 and R’ Shriki’s note 181*.


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.


 






ARTICLES ON NOACH:

View Complete List

Maybe
Rabbi Label Lam - 5765

Stealing: Not For The Taking
Rabbi Osher Chaim Levene - 5767

Never Underestimate the Power of Prayer
Rabbi Yissocher Frand - 5771

Looking for a Chavrusah?

The Gift of Meat
Rabbi Yisroel Ciner - 5761

Did The Animals Come Or Did Noach Have To Bring Them?
Rabbi Yissocher Frand - 5773

Building Towers - For What?
- 5774

> Beyond Youth
Rabbi Label Lam - 5764

Don't Shout at Me!
Rabbi Yaakov Menken - 5760

Language Barrier
Rabbi Mordechai Kamenetzky - 5760

Frumster - Orthodox Jewish Dating

Home Alone
Rabbi Mordechai Kamenetzky - 5756

Parshas Noach
Shlomo Katz - 5772

Investing in the Land
Shlomo Katz - 5767

ArtScroll

Constant Taking is Self Destructing
Rabbi Dovid Green - 5759

Generation to Generation
Rabbi Pinchas Winston - 5759

The Purpose of Creation Part III
Rabbi Aron Tendler - 5763

One for the Birds
Rabbi Yissocher Frand - 5756



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