21 July 2016

What’s So Important About Morality?

By Roy S. Neuberger

“Pinchas ben Elazar ben Aharon ha Kohain … stood up from amidst the assembly and took a spear in his hand. He followed [them] into the tent and pierced them both … and the plague was halted from upon the children of Israel….”
“Behold! I give him My covenant of peace.” (Bamidbar 25:7-12)

Unlike the Parah Adumah, we can understand this inyan very well. But do we really grasp the magnitude of Pinchas’ achievement? If this is so easy to understand, why aren’t we all out there like him, fighting for the ultimate cure?

It’s not so simple to be a Pinchas.

What precisely did he do?

The answer is that he single-handedly stood up for moral sanity. It is often difficult to go against the opinion of even one person, and here was Pinchas acting alone when the entire nation was paralyzed. His was the courage of an Avraham Avinu, who was not afraid to stand alone against an entire world for kovod Shomayim.

But is moral behavior so crucial that the entire future of Am Yisroel was at stake? What does it mean that “the plague was halted?”

Chazal state that “the Generation of the Flood acted corruptly [in a manner described as] ‘great,’ and they were [similarly] punished [in a manner described as] ‘great.’” (Sanhedrin 108a) Artscroll comments in the name of the Bais Halevi and others, “mankind’s licentious behavior permeated the world with a spirit of immorality which infected even the animals.”

Why does licentious behavior result in the destruction of the entire world?

Let’s compare this to magnets. If you place the north pole of one magnet next to the south pole of another magnet, they will bond, but if you place like poles together, they will repel each other. Hashem created men and women as opposites through which the strongest union is created, a union blessed by Hashem with the power to create new life!

But if mankind perverts the bria and tries to bring together like poles instead of opposite poles, they will repel each other. Rather than creating new life, this actually destroys life by creating chaos in the universe, with each part of the bria repelling the other part and loosening all the bonds of Creation. Instead of achdus, division is created everywhere in the universe, and the entire structure can literally fall apart, every atom spinning away from every other atom. This is similar to the plague of sinas chinom, in which individuals among Am Yisroel are increasingly separated from each other with disastrous consequences.

Moral perversion causes catastrophe on every level. Our entire world is now reeling under perversion after perversion. I happened to hear the new British Prime Minister’s opening words, in which she congratulated her predecessor on his achievement in making moral perversion the law of the land! The political turmoil in Britain followed the turmoil in the European Community and immediately preceded a mass attack in France and chaos in Turkey. Within the United States, there are also strong indications of a widespread breakdown in national unity.

World order – if there is such a thing – is rapidly deteriorating. It will not be easily fixed. Of course, Hashem gives us a chance to fix everything, just as He gave the world time to do teshuva while Noach was constructing the teva. But nobody paid attention. There was no Pinchas to restore sanity, and I do not see a Pinchas on the world stage today. Around the globe, mankind is plummeting to new lows of rebellion against the order established by the Ribono shel Olam when He created the universe.
“Therefore, a man shall leave his father and his mother and cling to his wife and they shall become one flesh.” (Beraishis 2:24) Chazalinform us that “he shall cling to his wife” teaches, “But [he shall] not [have relations with] a male.” (Sanhedrin 58a)

This is non-negotiable. This is the way Hashem created all mankind, Jew and non-Jew. Moral laws are included in the Sheva Mitzvos Bnai Noach, the Seven Laws which are applicable to all mankind. When the Torah tells us that “a man shall leave his father and mother and cling to his wife,” Chazal teach us that “The Holy Spirit says this to forbid to the Sons of Noach [that is, all mankind] forbidden relationships.” (Rashi to Beraishis 2:24)

This situation is uncomfortable to contemplate; the potential suffering is unimaginable. But, my friends, mankind is literally destroying the world, and it behooves us to be aware of this. Everything that we know in this world is now in imminent danger, just as at the time of the Mabul. We must try to understand that mankind is playing with fire, and the fuse is rapidly burning.

Pinchas ben Elazar ben Aharon ha Kohain acted because he saw sin in front of him and he was zealous to serve Hashem. His courage was prodigious and his reward unique. His act was similar to that of Nachshon ben Amminadav, through whom Israel was saved at the Yam Suf.

In our days, where do we begin? How do we confront an entire world gone mad? We have a moral obligation to raise our voices in Truth. In the end, there will come one person who will stand up in front of the entire world and proclaim “Hashem Echad Ushmo Echad” and “His Torah is forever!”

This will be Moshiach ben Dovid. 

We need him to come now and save us from the plague that is raging across the earth. May Hashem allow us to see with our own eyes the Days of Salvation, purification and Redemption that will come with the building of the Bais Hamikdosh in Yerushalayim Ir Hakodesh!

* * * *
Roy Neuberger, author and public speaker, can be reached at roy@2020vision.co.il.

© Copyright 2016 by Roy S. Neuberger

. . . . . . . . . .

Today is the yartzeit of the Ohr Hachaim
AND in Israel
Immorality is parading as pride
More 'oppositism'
The opposite of Good is Evil


Myrtle Rising said...

I especially liked the mashal of the magnetic poles--very apt.
Thanks for sharing this, Neshama.

Jesterhead45 said...

Another way to look at it is that the Torah way of life promotes the stability of the family unit and society in general as well as properly defining the functions each sex has towards maintaining the system of civilization, which most of the world subscribed to in one degree or another over the course of history until recently.

Along the way societies and many a civilization that abandoned the Torah inspired way of morality let alone belief in God soon declined and fell into ruin with few managing to recover.

Nowadays there are those who seek to rule the world and believe there are too many people on this planet, so their solution is to promote an anti-life morality that entails the destruction of the family unit, the blurring of societal roles between the sexes as well as elevating short-term ways of life that lead to mid/long-term violent instability and eventually ruination of society as a whole in order remake the world order in their own image.

It even extends to today's society deifying of women, unrestrained female nature and the feminine in general, making them believe they are better then men at everything and that they can have it all only in reality to end up with less then their grandmothers.

Which is all at the expense of the men who built, maintained and protected the whole edifice of civilization for the sake of future generations, to the point where understandably disenfranchised men of today increasingly look at the opposite sex as well as the current anti-life misandric society and see nothing worth defending.

Neshama said...

WOW Jesterhead, that’s a mouthful.

It doesn’t sit right with me the following: "It even extends to today's society deifying of women, unrestrained female nature and the feminine in general, making them believe they are better then men at everything and that they can have it all only in reality to end up with less then their grandmothers.”

Who is “deifying women”, “unrestrained female nature”???

Please be advised that Hashem Created MAN AND WOMAN, not slaves. There are two creations here on earth, and they both have value, and none should be “restrained” as in barefoot and in the kitchen. Ezer Knegdo means helping (both positive and negative). As with other freedoms, there are also the misguided. But spiritually, that means that the Shefa from Shamayim came down and landed on the undeserving because the Jews were not deserving at the time.

I’m sure you did NOT think through your comment and what you were criticizing.

Also, I don’t think MAN did such a good job of building and subduing the Earth! Look at the trouble the World is in NOW. And in general, Man’s doing without Woman’s input is catastrophe.

Neshama said...

Behind every successful MAN is a WOMAN.

Shes said...

Hi Neshama,
Firstly I would like to say I am such a big fan of your work. What you are doing is so so important and equally appreciated. Second, I think perhaps because you largely stay away from the shtuot of the world you might not have uderstood what Jesterhead meant. Unfortunately I am quite familiar with what is going on in the world and I can tell you that there really is an agenda and attempt to change the role of women to everything except for the role in which Hashem intended. This is being done by saying women can not only do whatever a man can do, but MORE then a man, that women are superior. We know that this is not true and that men and women are equal(and men are not more superior to women) but with diffrent roles. Howvever the evil doers and government are trying to undo the perfet system Hashem has created and one of the ways they are doing this is discouraging the divine role of women and encouragig them into the divine role of men. The role of women is not just to be barefoot in the kitchen, of that you are right. But they are being discouraged from even setting foot in the kitchen...and marrying...and havig children and this is happeing BY telling them they are better tha men(ot to mention the demonization of men too) And in the end, Jesterhead is right, many women are ending up with much less and are much unhappier then their grandmothers

Jesterhead45 said...

Obviously the ideal society is not one that handicaps itself by taking away half its human potential out of the equation like in the Yishmaelite dominated parts of the world, at the same time though it is all a balancing act and many a fallen civilization in their decline did all they could to disincentivize men in its final days so the latter ended up walking away even with the threat of bachelor taxes or foreign invasions.

Even without the current Yishmaelite invasion the declining West is increasingly becoming a virtual mirror image of the former (albeit currently without the inverse equivalents of Iran and Saudi Arabia), with increasingly draconian laws against men in the West as if to both demoralize and discouraging men from defending Western civilization.

Am defining Western society's deifying of women not as a criticism of equality or of women's inherent value, rather am merely pointing out that parity between the sexes has now given way to elevating one sex above reproach (whether societal, legal, jobs or even down to the realm of fictional entertainment) whilst diminishing the dignity and inherent value of the other sex.

Am defining Western civilization's promotion of unrestrained female nature as acts that hurt both men and society as well as ultimately themselves in the long term, the costs of which can be seen with the developed world's unpayable collage / consumer debts, declining births / collapsing marriage rates, out-of-wedlock births and fatherless homes, rising STDs and antibiotic resistant diseases, etc.

That promotion of unrestrained female nature has to also be contrasted by the West's vilification of male nature as inherently evil and something to be "cured" typically with pumping drugs such as Ritalin into young boys, with older men only able to find redemption in Western society for their so-called "toxic masculinity" by rejecting their male nature and effectively being encouraged to go "trans" or embrace other types of perversion.

Granted man did not do such as good job of using his God-given abilities to develop and subdue the Earth, yet he sacrificed, worked himself to an early grave* and invented labor-saving devices we now take for granted, all for the sake of his family so his progeny and future generations would not have to go through what he did.

*To the point where one of the top 5 regrets of dying men is that they wished they hadn't worked so hard - https://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2012/feb/01/top-five-regrets-of-the-dying

Neshama said...

Jester head and Shes, thank you for the compliment.

Well as much as I’d like to say that men and women are equal, in the Jewish world they very much are different and have different roles. But they are blessed with an added bit of Bina (which is a certain type of understanding) that is beneficial to man, when he learns how to relate to women.

Much of what you write about “what is going on in the world” is that of the non-Jewish world predominately. The Jewish world is beginning to suffer from this however. But to adopt this perspective is coming at it from a (excuse the expression) Golus mindset. Yes “they” want to destroy anything that relates to G–D. They are out to destroy the world to achieve their goal."

As I see it, men are used to relating to women in a certain way (think macho), so that when some women take on a different relationship to the world, the man is lost and confused as to what HIS ROLE is. Man is very dependent on woman, this is a fact. That’s why I wrote ‘behind every successful man is a woman’.

If women and men are equal with different roles, so what if a woman becomes a psychologist, lawyer, chef, electrician, guards, soldiers, etc. – she still performs these roles as a woman, not as a man. You are confusing roles with persona.

I happen to believe that women do have an advantage over men, and the wiser the woman the more successful the outcome.

Not everyone is intelligent, wise, or educated and talented. It varies greatly, equally between men and women.

That is why in the Jewish life, men need to sit and learn Torah their whole lives; they can work too, it doesn’t have to be kollel day and night. Having a job is also vital to the persona of a man but coupled with Torah learning. It develops his middos and in general improves his life.

I wouldn’t worry too much about the non Jewish world it is in deep deep decline (a culmination of men’s deeds). For the non Jewish male he must obey the 7 mitzvos Bnei Noach if he is to keep his sanity and grow in wisdom.

Anonymous said...

Just got to reading this post. Great! As usual Roy Neuberger gets it right and really knows how to write. Thanks for sharing his writing with us on your great blog.

Since the mabul, the world held on to some kind of normalcy, even with all the wars, murders and mayhem throughout the millenia. But, they did not stoop to that evil of evils as disrupting the very essence of nature itself; the reason we are now reliving the era of before the great flood is because this is really a war against G-D by those who want to to gods themselves and want to do everything the opposite of His Will.

They do not understand the heavy price the whole world is in for; even though, already we hear the news from the four corners of the earth, the mass killings, etc. To think there will not be punishment from the Creator of everything for this greatest of sins is really being naive.

We pray for all the righteous and, of course, for every Jew to do teshuva to hasten the coming of Moshiach Ben Dovid b'rachamim.

Also, to Neshama - do not take personally what Jesterhead wrote; he really is right. Today, we see the wickedness of many women who have lost their way trying to play the role of men. Both have their given roles from the Almighty. Just like the snake has taken hold of mankind, so too, lilith has taken hold; all signs before the arrival of Moshiach Tzdkeinu.