Torah.org Home Subscribe Services Support Us
  Page title
Print Version

Email this article to a friend

Darkness By Day

Some religions believe that there are two gods, one of good and one of bad. Whenever something which they consider positive takes place, they attribute it to the god of good, and when something they deem negative happens they say it was from the god of evil. They think that the constant ups and downs of life are a result of the struggles between these two gods.

Judaism views this matter totally differently. We believe that there is one G-d and that everything that takes place in this world comes directly from Him and is good. This belief is reaffirmed twice daily when we say Shema and proclaim that Hashem is in fact “echad” — One and Only. This concept is alluded to in the first blessing preceding the Shema. The Talmud tells us that in the opening blessing of Shema we must mention the night during the day and the day during the night (Brachos 11b).

On the surface, darkness seems less good than the light and warmth of daylight, both literally and figuratively. “Dark times” are usually associated with loss, loneliness, confusion and hardship. And yet in the pre-Shema blessing we mention darkness during the day when the sun is shining brightly. This affirms our belief that every creation of Hashem and everything that He causes to transcend upon this Earth is ultimately good (Rabbeinu Yona, Brachos 5b).

Taking this idea one step further, we may suggest that the black of the night is in fact something extremely positive. While daylight helps us engage in all the activities we need and is essential for every chemical and biological process on the planet, nighttime signals that it is time to stop and rest and gather strength for the coming day. Symbolically, dark times in our lives are often opportunities to stop and take stock of who we really are and where we really want to go in the future. Mentioning the night by day helps us focus on the positive aspects of the night (Mahari Abuhav according to Perisha 59,1 and Elia Rabba).


Text Copyright © 2008 by Rabbi Daniel Travis and Torah.org


 






ARTICLES ON NOACH:

View Complete List

Raising Children: The Secret of Success
Rabbi Aron Tendler - 5760

Language Barrier
Rabbi Mordechai Kamenetzky - 5760

Join the Voices in the Ark
Rabbi Label Lam - 5774

Looking for a Chavrusah?

Certain Things Noach Did Not Have To Worry About
Rabbi Yissocher Frand - 5775

Priorities Define A Person
Rabbi Yissocher Frand - 5766

How To Need Nothing And Have Everything
Rabbi Aron Tendler - 5764

ArtScroll

Making Something of Nothing
Rabbi Shlomo Jarcaig - 5764

Parshas Noach
Shlomo Katz - 5772

The Roots of Evil
Rabbi Naftali Reich - 5769

> Great In His Own Times
Rabbi Yitzchok Adlerstein - 5768

Building Towers - For What?
- 5774

Window to the World
Rabbi Mordechai Kamenetzky - 5762

Frumster - Orthodox Jewish Dating

The Choosing People
Rabbi Label Lam - 5761

Understanding the Faith of Noach
Rabbi Yosef Kalatsky - 5763

Meaningful Speech
Rabbi Pinchas Winston - 5773

Compounded Interest
Rabbi Mordechai Kamenetzky - 5761



Project Genesis

Torah.org Home


Torah Portion

Jewish Law

Ethics

Texts

Learn the Basics

Seasons

Features

TORAHAUDIO

Ask The Rabbi

Knowledge Base




Help

About Us

Contact Us



Free Book on Geulah!




Torah.org Home
Torah.org HomeCapalon.com Copyright Information