21.05.2011 17.Ijar, 5771 Bechukotai; Tag 32 des Omer
Both the Torah and science can awaken us to the awareness that our actions impact the entire planet.
For millenia Jews learned the spiritual law communicated by the Torah: the blessing of beneficial rains and crops depends on our acting righteously. In recent decades scientists have also explained that human actions affect the quality and quantity of rain. Today, both the Torah and science can awaken us to the awareness that our actions impact the entire planet.
Let us begin with a Jewish perspective on rain. Praying for rain is a key part of the spiritual life of a Jew. For almost half of the year, the daily prayers include praise of G-d as the One who “makes the wind blow and the rain descend,” and a request that G-d will “give dew and rain for a blessing on the face of the earth." A special blessing for rain appears in the liturgy of the holiday of Shemini Atzeret, at the beginning of Israel's rainy season. We pray that the Divine bring beneficial rain, which falls at the right time to nourish our crops and fills our reservoirs. As the Talmud says, "The day when rain falls is as great as the day on which heaven and earth were created." (Tractate Ta'anit 8b)….