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Beit Midrash Series Ein Ayah

The Wise Must Not Be Hostages of the Silly

One may put a clump of salt into an oil lamp so that it will give light and kindle well. One may put mud or pottery under the oil lamp so that it will lessen the light.
Various RabbisTishrei 4 5779
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Gemara: One may put a clump of salt into an oil lamp so that it will give light and kindle well. One may put mud or pottery under the oil lamp so that it will lessen the light.



Ein Ayah: Sometimes, silliness, which always goes along with evil, connects things that are difficult to grasp to ridiculous ideas. This can happen when a simple mind is confused by something in nature, which is actually set by the wisdom of Hashem. There is some logic to avoid such actions that are bad for the lightheaded. But that is not the way the Rabbis go about things. We will not forbid good things because some people do not understand them.

At a time of happiness, a silly person will be confused if light increases by means of a trick, and many strange ideas may enter his small mind. When it is possible to conserve and have less light, one who is intellectually lazy may think strange thoughts about the means used to do so. But since the actions are good, they are not forbidden. The fact that some make mistakes does not make it forbidden for the wise. It is an important idea that Hashem gave tools to the wise to use the world in the most effective way, for their benefit.
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