More Discussions for this daf
1. Tzadik v'Ra Lo 2. פרט לנשיא שנצטרע

Gershon Lewis asks:

One the one hand, we are expected to use our intellect to learn about, embrace and observe the laws of the Torah, including the constant mitzvas of believing in G-d, no others, loving G-d, etc.

We are also supposed to be kind and thoughtful, like Hash-m is. However, Hash-m has set up a system where death, disease, divorce, etc. create tremendous suffering in people. How does this fit with Hash-m's love? It seems that the real answer to this question is to accept that Hash-m is Hash-m, the Creato-r, All-Know-ng, All Powerf-l and we are merely human being, mere creations. It's one of the 48 devarim-macir es mekomo.

As was trained as a lawyer, should I just accept what the Rabinim saw that Hash-m loves us (ahava raba, Av harahaman) (and love Hash-m with all your, heart, life and meodecha (wealth, what he modeds for your) and put aside my lack of full understanding of suffering, "tragedy" and challenge and unconditionally love Hash-m, again when my whole belief in the Torah and Hash-m is based upon USING my intellect not PUTTING IT ASIDE?



The Kollel replies:

I'm not sure if I would use "Makir Es Mekomo" to describe the answer to your dilemma. I would rather say that in order to understand the Divine plan which includes both what is good and what appears to be bad we would have to be Hash-m Himself. If we had the ability to understand why bad things happen to good people, there would be no free choice, no possibility of sinning, and no reward afterwards. You don't need to surrender your intellect in order to accept its limitations.

We are mortal, we cannot even see behind us, we cannot understand why so much good is bestowed on us (in the form of life itself and its numerous gifts), so why should we expect to understand the evil? When a parent takes his child to the dentist and holds him down while the child suffers, can the child believe his parent loves him? All he feels is the pain being inflicted; he cannot sense the ultimate reason for the pain.

Death is designed to make us sit up and use our lives while we have them; disease can also be conquered and defeated in many cases, and if people succumb to it they surely merit expiation of their sins; divorce is the catalyst for self-searching and perfecting character traits in order to learn to love properly. Yet even when we don't understand, we must believe. That is the basis of faith, that one cannot truly comprehend in this world but one must believe that G-d loves us and wishes only for our good.

Yoel Domb