Harmony & Synergy

From My Life to Yours ~ Let's Build Some Bridges!

4. Noah: Righteous Man or Simply Better Than?

Noah, the man with the boat, water, and animals.  We all know the basic story.  In this video, I focus on the balance between how we are affected by our surroundings, and how we also have to rise above our surroundings and give to others around us.  There is one phrase at the beginning of the parsha (section of the Torah), and the contradictory commentaries that we have been given by our sages help us answer this question.  Had Noah lived in a different time, would he have been even more righteous?  Or is the Torah giving a backhand criticism and saying that had he lived in another generation, we wouldn’t even be talking about him?  Watch to hear my conclusion :)

Have you had experiences like the ones described?  Did you have to make difficult decisions and changes?  Would love to hear of your experiences!

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5 Comments

  1. Chayili

    Andrea, you make me well, I love your words .. thanks!

  2. Gila

    Also, in terms of righteousness we read that one of the first things Noah did was panted a vineyard….and proceeded to drink from it inexcess, embarrassed himself. What is he now considered as, in this new world? Already he has been taken down from Tzaddik.

    • Yes, the wonderful thing about the Torah is that our “tzaddikim” aren’t perfect. They are beautifully human, and we hear about their hardships and failures in order to learn from it and grow ourselves. I could make a million excuses for Noah, such as, maybe he planted the vineyard because he wanted to thank Gd with wine (like Kiddush), maybe the reality of the world was so depressing that he wanted to alter his state of consciousness in order to see the shechina in everything (like on Purim). Either way, even if his intentions were pure, the outcome was not so good. Again we wonder, why does the Torah tell us specifically about this incident and not about something like how they built shelter for themselves?
      There is a beautiful saying (I can’t remember the source, Hillel, perhaps?) which I always try to remember:
      A tzaddik is not a perfect human being. A tzaddik falls countless times, but what makes him a tzaddik is that he stands up after each fall. A rasha falls in the same way as a tzaddik. The difference is that he doesn’t get up.

  3. Thank you so much for your excellent video. As a goy, it is encouraging to hear about righteous Gentiles like Noah (cp. Yekhez’qel 14:14,20), even with his faults (Bereshit 9:21). Your videos are very engaging and I love your tichels. Will you ever do a cello video?

  4. Goldie Zietz

    Wonderful as always!

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