hear it or lose it

The Maor Eynayim of Chernobyl explains about Noach: He was a tzaddik because he reprimanded his generation and they refused to listen, and so, all the good that was in them was transferred to him. This is the way of things: when the spiritual energy of the speech of the tzaddik falls upon the ears of the sinners and they refuse to listen with the spiritual potential of their hearing, the tzaddik's speech returns to him, taking with it the sinner's hearing. Hearing, he adds, is at a much higher spiritual level than speaking and so, the best part of the sinner is transferred upon the tzaddik. This is the meaning of the phrase, Noach was a tzaddik from (literally) his generation.

Moshe gathered in the best of all of us when he admonished us and we didn't heed his words. But, it says yismach moshe bmatnat chelko - moshe is gladdened by the receiving of his lot. On shabbat, when we are complete and worthy, the best part of us is returned by moshe to each of us, and this makes moshe happy, to have only his lot and not that of others.

During tefillah this afternoon, it occurred to me that HaShem always listens to our requests, which is just another way he is always the best. If he were to turn deaf ears on us, perhaps we would be entitled to a greater portion of his goodness. (L'havdil) But then, his goodness is there waiting for us to want it, waiting to sprout and grow like the grasses and the trees before Adam prayed for the first rains. Moshe truly is the closest to HaShem, for like HaShem, Moshe derives his deepest joy when we each earn and receive our lot.

According to one of the Baal Shem Tov's most profound Torahs, every day everything before us is the subtext of our constant relationship (conversation even) with HaShem. His words surround us all the time, we need to listen and hear his words in order to receive our lot. Three times a day we have a chance to really take our daily experiences to heart. If you miss those oppurtunities, stop before you go to sleep and think on your day, extract the meanings and messages and remember that HaShem fills the heavens and the earth, no place is absent of his presence. Even the sins for which they say there is no teshuva are forgiven when you realize each night that you would readily give your life to fulfill God's will. (Notzer Hesed end of perek dalet)


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