"The Way of G-d"
Part 3: "The Soul, Inspiration, Prophecy, and the Supernatural"
Ch. 5: "Moses as a Prophet"
But when Moses communicated with G-d he did so on a whole other level. And
while in a certain sense his way of doing that was seemingly prosaic,
we'll find that it was its very matter-of-factness that made it remarkable.
First of all, Moses didn't have to be asleep or in a trance to prophesy --
he'd be wide awake and fully conscious, addressing G-d "face to face the
way a man speaks to his friend" (Exodus 33:11).
Rather than see things through veiled "lenses", Moses saw what he was
presented with as if looking through clear glass. And rather than receive
his messages parabolically, he was told things outright.
So in a certain sense it could be said that rather than fall into occult
trances and utter pithy and picturesque adages that would stun and
bewilder, Moses simply "chatted" nonchalantly with G-d Almighty (imagine
that, if you will!) all the time; and that he "merely" quoted G-d
outright, word for word and enunciated His messages in most earthly terms.
Understand, though, that Moses was still and all human. As such, there
were certain revelations of G-d's Glory and of the utter truth that he
just couldn't bear, and the clear lens he did indeed peer through was in a
sense a necessary though minimal obstruction, too. But it allowed for the
most direct perceptions a human being could ever achieve while yet alive.
Hence, thanks to the nature of his vision, the information Moses received
was bold, bounteous, and pragmatic; and it far, far exceeded all other
This series is dedicated to the memory of Yitzchak Hehrsh ben Daniel z"l,
and Sara Rivka bas Yaakov Dovid, z"l.
Text Copyright © 2004 by Rabbi Yaakov Feldman and Torah.org.