Beit Midrash

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To dedicate this lesson
condensed from Ein Ayah, Shabbat 9:102

Human Parenthood – Raising Coarse Physicality into Spiritual Light


Various Rabbis

Tevet 3 5780
[We continue with more arguments of Moshe that the angels are not fit to receive the Torah.]

Gemara: "What else is written in [the Torah]?" "Respect your father and your mother" (Shemot 20:11). "Do you have a father and a mother?"

Ein Ayah: This family connection [of parents and children] represents purification, when the spiritual and physical realms overlap with the creation of life and the chain of generations. Matters of ideals join together with natural tendencies. Matters of the lowly earth and the lofty heavens form one unit. On top of all of this, there is an imprint of the grandeur of life of a unity that is representative of Hashem’s own greatness. [Ed. note - The last sentence was shortened because I did not know how to translate it responsibly.]

This entire moral phenomenon can only be realized in such a complete way within the human family. The relationship of parents to their children and children to their parents, in the purest form, in which the finest spiritual form is connected to its physical expressions, in a way that makes the foundation of life [i.e., procreation], with its palpable coarseness, more gentle. This becomes even more holy with the existence of a commandment to honor a father and a mother. It is only within the human family that such a divine moral imperative can find expression. The relationships involved are, on the one hand, separated from the related deep physicality and, on the other hand, are not applicable to the Heavenly creatures who are full of intellectuality and know only of a life of purity. The Torah, which is designed to turn darkness into light and that which is related to death into fine life, filled with grandeur, can only be given to people, not to angels who do not have parents.
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