Parshas Beshalach; inspiration - best in or out of natural environment?

So the story goes a bit like this...Aish run 3 main trips in summer; one 2 New York, one Israel and the other Australia. I asked my friend which trip he wanted to be a madrich on and he replied 'New York, because I feel that kids are more likely to be able to successfully retain a change of personality, if they undergo that change in their natural enviromnent. If they went to eg Australia, the inspiration

they got their would be lost wen they got back home because it would not be real' The question always dawned on me; is he correct in this principle???

Wen we look into Torah we seem to see, interestingly, the opposite is true; the concept is that we go out of our normal enviromnents to effectvely develop (not that this is impossible in normal environment) and the next stage is using and fostering that development in the normal environment. Both stages are important.

There are 2 great examples of this concept; one in the personal level and one on a national scale. First, Noach goes into the teivah - a completely new enivronment from which 2 build a new world during the flood. This was not just a way of saving Noach - HaShem could of given him the lungs of a fish and he would have survived the flood! This was something much deeper. The Medrash says the difference between Noach and Avraham was that whilst Avraham spread his Torah, Noach did not. Thus the ark - where Noach spent all day and all night feeding and giving 2 others - was 'olam chesed yiboneh' a test and course of chesed with which 2 develop the world. The proof? Perek 8 posuk 16 HaShem tells Noach 'go out from the teivah.' why was noach waiting for this commandment? He knew the earth was dry; he sent out the dove 4 psukim ago what was he waiting for 2 go out the ark??? Its because the ark was a 'chesed course' so Noach had 2 wait 4 HaShem to tell him 'you have completed the course; now you can go out of the ark.' (Rav Shishar). Then he went back into the world to build it up again. So we see development in an unreal atmosphere and using that back in real world.

The second example is Bnei Yisrael in this week's sedrah. We go 2 the desert where HaShem takes care of our every need; we receive manna directly from Him and it is clear He is clearly watching over us; we saw Matan Torah, the Clouds of glory, etc. It was very easy to be 'frum' at the times of the desert. Then we had to go into Israel, where (though there is more direct providence there than in other countries) the presence of HaShem is not as clear as it was in the midbar. In fact I remember Rabbi Kimche quoted once that the reason Moshe when he hit the rock was not allowed into Israel was not a punishment per se, but rather was because Moshe in hitting the rock wanted to rely on miracles still, and HaShem's plan was for us not to rely on the open miracles of the desert when we went into Israel. So it wasnt that Moshe was punished, rather that his 'leadership' ways were so 2 speak not fitting for a Jewish people in the Land of Israel.

Here 2 we see that development is best outside the normal restraints of the natural environment (Bnei Yisrael went out of Egypt in a hurry apparently according to the Maharal to illustrate that they were above time at that point; outside the normal dimensions) and then best 'brought back down to Earth' in the natural environment.

But there is one last point to sum up. Rabbi Tatz puts it like this: Inspiration works in following way; First a burst of energy and growth (thats stage 1 we described above) then the process of slow development and internalisation of that spiritual energy (that's stage 2; natual environment).

And the last stage? Having successfully added your part to that inspiration, it grows even taller than is was at stage 1 by you bringing into your own world.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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