Ritual Wisdom 6-15-18
This week’s Torah reading is Korach. In the past few Torah readings, the Torah describes many of the episodes in which the Jewish people complained and rebelled against Moshe, which in essence means they rebelled against G-d.
We read how they complained about the manna – their heavenly food that came each day. They also complained about G-d wanting to bring them to the Promised Land, after hearing the negative report from the ten spies. In this week’s Torah reading, Korach, we read about another rebellion against Moshe and Aaron, this time by Korach and his 250 men.
Even though the events in the Torah took place over three thousand years ago, Torah comes from the word teaching and lesson. The stories of the Torah contain a lesson for all times.
The Jewish people of that generation had seen great miracles; The Ten plagues, the Exodus, the splitting of the Sea, the pillar of cloud and fire which accompanied them in the desert, the manna, which came from heaven each day and the giving of the Torah at Mount Sinai etc., one miracle greater than the other. So how can we understand the fact that they lacked trust in G-d?
The answer is that because they saw miracles continuously, they mistakenly viewed them as nature. They thought, how can it be otherwise? As a result, they took these miracles for granted and stopped appreciating the wonderful miraculous blessings that G-d provided for them daily. They stopped seeing G-d’s hand in everything and complained about trivial things.
The lesson for us is that we, too, must realize and appreciate our daily miracles! However, it is essential that we realize them as such and not take them for granted. If we only took the time to think how many breaths we inhale and exhale each day, how many steps we take every day and how many words we speak each day, etc., we would appreciate the magnitude of our daily blessings.
What’s more, our appreciation of all these wonderful blessings would automatically alleviate our feelings of anxiety and distress in our day to day life.
A mother was once walking along the seashore with her son, when a huge wave carried him out to sea. The mother began praying, “Please G-d, give me back my child!”
Shortly afterward a huge wave deposited her child unharmed at her feet. The mother embraced the child, “Thank you G-d!. Thank you! I will be forever grateful to you!” Then she looked at her child again, looked up to heaven and said sternly, “And what about his hat?”
Every morning, we recite a number of blessings thanking G-d for giving us so many wonderful things in life, which we take for granted when everything is normal. Concentrating on the good which we receive each day, reminds us not to take things for granted, thus our day will be a happier day!