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Sunday, May 17, 2015

Women Contested


The Netziv's (Founder and Rosh Yeshiva of the Volozhin, the first modern Yeshiva) wife was very learned and extremely proficient in Tanach (written Torah). Once she heard a simple uneducated man saying the blessing “that He did not make me a woman” with extreme fervor. She was aghast. What was this man so excited about, she herself knew more than this man knew. She confronted her husband who pacified her by saying that every male makes the blessing in relation to the females that correlate to him. The question is whether this is a true answer or just a placation. For the simple meaning of this prayer is that the male has the full 613 commandments and is the main player in the Supernal image.

In the Yeshiva world the story is told that a Yeshiva Bochur took out a BJJ (Beis Yakov of Yerushalayim) girl out on a date – to the lobby of a hotel (terrible custom of the litvaks), upon seeing the boozing of some of the clientele the boy exclaimed, B”H that He didn't make me a gentile. The girl spoke up and said, that Rebetzin Davis (the infamous head mistress of BJJ) had taught them, that when they make the daily morning blessing, “that He has not made me a gentile”, they should not think of a fall out or an ordinary gentile, but even the president, for it is such a blessing to be Jew. So the Yeshiva boy replied, that when he makes his daily morning blessing, “that He has not made me a woman”, he doesn't simply refer to any woman, but even Rebetzin Davis.
So the question is whether this goes against the above placation the Netziv gave his wife, or maybe Rebetzin Davis really isn't on par even with a Yeshiva Bochur.
All of this should be taken with good humor, I mean no respect to any gentile or woman, certainly not those that are better than I....

According to the Kabbala in the future the woman's status is higher than the man's, the woman will be the true “Woman of Valor” of which the verse (Proverbs) says, “A woman of valor is the crown of her husband”, the crown being higher. The Ramchal explains this quite beautifully but it is difficult for me to bring his words here. If this is the case how can it be that the woman has less commandments, which are seeming indications of higher responsibility?

Today it occurred to me that maybe this is an aspect of what the Ramchal revealed that originally Adam had only one commandment, and when he didn't keep it, there where additional commandments – the 7 mitzvos of the Ben Noach, and when Noach took drugs and all in all did not bring the desired rectification to the world, Hashem indoctrinated the requirement of the 613 mitzvos. Rabbi Nachman also points out that it was only due to transgressions that there was a proliferation of instructions (See Tractate Nedarim 22b, The Life Of Rabbi Nachman item #202 - His trip to Israel item #18).

From here it is possible to say, that in the end of time when all the sins and shortcomings of man will be rectified, the woman's fewer obligations will no longer be a sign of less responsibility, but a sign of superior connection to HY.

Keep in mind that Rabbi Nachman revealed that prayer – which is the aspect of the female – is much more important than learning Torah – the aspect of the male. Rabbi Nachman was ushering in the future time.

Na Nach Nachma Nachman MeUman!

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