07 February 2015

After-Shabbat Thoughts

19 Shevat 5775
Motzaei"sh

At the end of Havdalah we say, "...Who distinguishes between...Israel and other peoples, between the seventh day and the six working days...."

It occurred to me that a parallel could be drawn between these two which would go far in helping us understand the proper relationship of Jews to non-Jews.

If Israel is like the seventh day and the other peoples are like the six working days, it demonstrates that it takes BOTH to make a complete week, however the seventh day is clearly on a higher spiritual level, with dimensions above and beyond the six mundane days and fulfills a wholly different purpose in Creation. 

There are clear boundaries around the Shabbat which mark its entrance and its exit in order to maintain its sanctity by separating it from the six working days. And we all know that all of Creation yearns for the day when the world will be kulo Shabbat - all Shabbat, every day of the week! That is the goal.

As the Ramchal said: "...In the World-to-Come, however, there will be no nation other than Israel.

The souls of righteous gentiles will be allowed to exist in the Future World, but only as an addition and attachment to Israel. They will therefore be secondary to the Jew, just as a garment is secondary to the one who wears it. All that they attain of the ultimate good will have to be attained in this manner, since by virtue of their nature they can receive no more.


And those who rise even to this level will be very thankful for it, since they had no desire to rise up to the ultimate level of Israel.