Torah.org Home Subscribe Services Support Us
  Page title
Print Version

Email this article to a friend

Darkness By Day

Some religions believe that there are two gods, one of good and one of bad. Whenever something which they consider positive takes place, they attribute it to the god of good, and when something they deem negative happens they say it was from the god of evil. They think that the constant ups and downs of life are a result of the struggles between these two gods.

Judaism views this matter totally differently. We believe that there is one G-d and that everything that takes place in this world comes directly from Him and is good. This belief is reaffirmed twice daily when we say Shema and proclaim that Hashem is in fact “echad” — One and Only. This concept is alluded to in the first blessing preceding the Shema. The Talmud tells us that in the opening blessing of Shema we must mention the night during the day and the day during the night (Brachos 11b).

On the surface, darkness seems less good than the light and warmth of daylight, both literally and figuratively. “Dark times” are usually associated with loss, loneliness, confusion and hardship. And yet in the pre-Shema blessing we mention darkness during the day when the sun is shining brightly. This affirms our belief that every creation of Hashem and everything that He causes to transcend upon this Earth is ultimately good (Rabbeinu Yona, Brachos 5b).

Taking this idea one step further, we may suggest that the black of the night is in fact something extremely positive. While daylight helps us engage in all the activities we need and is essential for every chemical and biological process on the planet, nighttime signals that it is time to stop and rest and gather strength for the coming day. Symbolically, dark times in our lives are often opportunities to stop and take stock of who we really are and where we really want to go in the future. Mentioning the night by day helps us focus on the positive aspects of the night (Mahari Abuhav according to Perisha 59,1 and Elia Rabba).


Text Copyright © 2008 by Rabbi Daniel Travis and Torah.org


 

ARTICLES ON PINCHAS AND THE THREE WEEKS:

View Complete List

The Nine Days of Mourning
Rabbi Dovid Green - 5758

A Flock Without a Shepherd
Rabbi Yaakov Menken - 5759

Vov of Connection-Vov of Division
Rabbi Yissocher Frand - 5761

Looking for a Chavrusah?

The Red Heifer Reality
Rabbi Aron Tendler - 5765

Our lives Revolve Around God
Rabbi Berel Wein - 5770

Playing It Safe By Doing What The Torah Commands
Rabbi Yissocher Frand - 5772

> Spear-heading Redemption
Rabbi Pinchas Winston - 5764

Zealotry: How Far To Go
Rabbi Berel Wein - 5767

Forever Sensitive
Rabbi Label Lam - 5763

Frumster - Orthodox Jewish Dating

A Double-Edged Sword
Rabbi Naftali Reich - 5772

Harnessing Powers
Rabbi Yehudah Prero - 5761

The Most Precious Commodity
Rabbi Berel Wein - 5772

ArtScroll

Peace Not Pieces
Rabbi Yaakov Menken - 5764

G-d's Partner
Rabbi Aron Tendler - 5762

Grandson of Aharon -- The Lover of Peace & Pursuer of Peace
Rabbi Yissocher Frand - 5766

Faithful Contentment
Rabbi Naphtali Hoff - 5774



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