"Egypt" Loses Its Power Over Israel on the 15th of Nissan

"...and on the 15th of Nisan they will in the future be redeemed from subjugation to exile.” (Tanhuma, Bo 9)

31 October 2018

Is There Any "Kinship" Between Light and Darkness?

22 Marcheshvan 5779

Or HaRa'ayon, Chapter 25, Havdalah continued...
...Certainly, G-d's goal is world unity, but not based on falsehood and evil, and not through acceptance of the abominable concepts of coexistence and tolerance which pave the way for equating holiness and abomination, good and evil. Unity is desirable but only after goodness reigns in the world and all accept G-d's sovereignty.
I'll interrupt to point out here that until that day arrives, this true unity can only be found among the community of Torah-faithful Jews. 
When G-d's truth and mastery reign on earth, there will be real unity. It will come precisely through separation. 
Havdalah is a supreme, Divine value which entered the world right at Creation in order to separate between entities whose combining together is bad for them and bad for the world. It distinguishes between good and evil entities, labeling each, and then divides and isolates them. Boundaries are delineated and fences erected proclaiming the separate place of each, so as to keep them apart and keep the substantive difference between them from being blurred. G-d set this process in motion right at Creation so as to separate between light and darkness, good and evil....
...because a person is obligated to choose good and reject evil absolutely, and this requires total separation, it therefore says, "G-d divided between the light and the darkness" (Gen. 1:4). G-d made separate spheres for them so that they would not serve together and so that they would be distinguishable. Our sages said (Jerusalem Talmud, Berachot 8:6), "G-d told the light, 'The day will be your sphere,' and He told the darkness, 'The night will be your sphere.'" Rashi comments (Gen., Ibid.), 'He saw that it was good and that it did not befit the light and darkness to serve in a mixture. He, therefore, made the sphere of one the day and sphere of the other the night."
Thus, G-d established the concepts of good and evil and separated between them, and he thereby fashioned a fundamental  principle for the universe and for Israel - separation, without which the universe cannot endure. Separation is what makes good and evil clearly distinguishable, thereby preventing the blurring and mixing from which are born fraud. Our sages also said (Bamidbar Rabbah, 18:7):
     Moses said to [Korach]: "G-d set boundaries in His universe. Can you mix day and night? The beginning of the Torah states, 'It was evening and it was morning'; 'G-d separated between the light and the darkness' (Gen. 1:5,4). G-d did this for the world's use, so did He separate Israel from the nations: 'I have separated you out from among the nations to be Mine' (Lev. 20:26)." [See also Tanchuma, Korach, 5]
...separating between good and evil, the holy and the profane, lesser and greater holiness, or the holy and the holy of holies surely fulfills a Divine imperative. Such separation is good, and a great mitzvah, because to separate is first of all to define, to establish the inequality between one thing and another.
This concept is so obvious on a fundamental level that even the common culture has captured it in the idea that "the good guys wear white hats and the bad guys wear black hats" with white and black being synonymous with light and darkness. But, to view this as anything but a "racist" idea requires accepting a different perspective on what actually defines "good and evil."

Light is "good" because it reveals. Darkness is "bad" or "evil" because it conceals. Evil is "evil" because it conceals, obscures or obliterates "good." When Israel reveals G-d in the world, it is a light to the nations who sit mired in the darkness of materialism (closer to the earth than to heaven).

Our sages taught us that Adam and Chavah were beings of light - their souls shone through their bodies before their "fall." They existed on an higher level - closer to the Creator where all is revealed.

After they sinned, that translucence was obscured by the greater physicality of existence on the lower level - more 'distant' from the Creator where His involvement with His creation is more concealed. 

Gentiles remain on this lower, darker level while Jews, by virtue of what Abraham accomplished by raising himself back to a higher level, are able to reveal more light. Receiving the Torah at Har Sinai elevated them even more. Jews, when they are true to their covenant with God, reveal "goodness," i.e. HKB"H in the world. However, it stands to reason that Jews who rebel against HKB"H and break the covenant are capable of a much greater evil than the nations can accomplish. Those who are higher can fall further.

This comes to teach us that not only must we separate from the nations, but we must also separate from the evildoers among us. Those who cling to darkness have no kinship with the light.

That said, there is a path to elevation for the gentile (conversion) and to return by the rebellious Jew (teshuvah) should they desire it. Turn from darkness and seek the light.

To be continued, iy"H...


  1. REMINDER! The Erev Rav are called Erev because they are a mixture - like erev is the only time when light and dark mix. Judeo-Christianity is a mixture of Judaism and Christianity like Hellenism was a mixture of Greek culture with Judaism during the time of the Maccabees.

    Here is a prime example of mixing Judaism with Western culture which is based on a Christian mix of paganism with Christianity (Look up All Hallow's Eve, i.e. Hallowe'en).

    Five Ways Mussar Can Make Halloween Jewish For Your Kids from americanmussar.com.

    1. One more thing. The first thing I did as a gentile searching for truth and closeness to Hashem was to eliminate Halloween observance from our family life. And it wasn't easy - lots of cultural and familial pressure to maintain it. But, nobody said it would be easy to find Hashem in this world. "If you search for Me like silver and like gold..." These are precious metals because they are rare and hard to find!

  2. ...The Essence of a state of good is when a Force has the capacity to be illuminated by the Light of God's Presence. The opposite state is that which lacks this capacity, and where this Light is therefore withheld from a given Force.

    ...It is necessary to realize that the true cause of everything good, whether among the Forces or their effects, is the Light of God's Presence. The cause of all evil, on the other hand, is the absence of this Light.

    With regard to good, however, God is considered its actual cause, both in general and in particular. God is not considered the direct cause of evil, on the other hand, and we are thus taught that 'God does not relate His Name to evil." God is nevertheless still the indirect cause even of evil, since its actual cause is the absence of good, and it therefore results from the absence of God's Light and the concealment of His Presence.

    -- - Derech Hashem, Part I, Chapter 5, Section 8