13.05.2011 09.Ijar, 5771 Tag 24 des Omer
The inner teachings of the commandment of Shemitah are vital today as humankind flirts dangerously with destroying the environment.
Before the sin of Adam and Hava (Eve), the Earth provided sustenance not through the plotting and plowing of people, but rather through prayer. In the Talmud (200 C.E.-~500 C.E.), the Sage Rav Assi expounds that the vegetation would not break through the Earth until Adam came along and prayed to G-d to have mercy on the Earth. The rains fell and the Earth sprouted. The removal of the fruit from the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil can be interpreted as a decision to derive pleasure from G-d’s Earth without paying attention to the consequences it would have. As a result, humankind’s working of the land was no longer within the context of safeguarding it. And thus, the Earth is cursed, sprouting thorns and thistles, only giving forth its fruit by the sweat of one’s brow. The commandment of Shemitah given by G-d in the portion of Behar enables a return to the ideal relationship between humankind and creation….