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Partners in Creation

21/10/09 08:19:23


Rabbi Moshe Lieber

“Let us make Man in Our image” is the way that the Torah describes the creation of Man. Although Hashem alone created us the Torah speaks in the plural, Let us make Man. Rashi explains that this teaches us to act with humility and consult with others, even those less brilliant or talented, before making major  decisions. Although Hashem is perfection defined and needs no help, He teaches us to humbly realize that as human mortal beings we need to get input from others.

The lack of humility to consult with others can sometimes have catastrophic consequences .Rav Shach zt”l once needed an operation. In the surgical theatre, right before anesthesiologist administered the anesthesia, the surgeon asked Rav Shach to explain the words of Chazal that the best of doctors belongs in Gehinnom. Rav Shach replied “The Sages were very careful with their words. The best doctors often suffer from arrogance which prevents them from consulting with others and seeking another opinion. They think to themselves ‘I am a world class expert in my field; how can I ask someone else’s opinion?’ Thus they make decisions that are fatal only because they didn’t seek counsel. The best doctors unfortunately belong in Gehinnom”.

Magen Avos views this type of consultation as one of the most vital functions of friendship. While no one knows the intricacies of a situation as a person himself, the fact that being totally objective is almost impossible necessitates seeking advice from others. One can be overwhelmed by bitterness or a vested interest and fall into sin. While a friend may not be ready to engage in self criticism he doesn’t possess your yetzer harah and can help you sidestep temptation.

Who is Hashem speaking to when He says “Let us make Man? Man himself says R’ Yisrael of Tchortkov. Hashem says to each one of us “I have provided you with all the potential you need to become the great person you could be. You can make yourself truly human. Every talent, aptitude and ability that you need for your life I’ve given you. Now it is up to you to take the raw potential and fashion it into a Man. Every day of your life we will make Man as you redefine and reshape the spiritual dimensions and parameters of your essential self.

As we begin a new year of reading the Torah may we have the courage to mine the Torah for the insight and depth that will allow us to be His partners in “Let us make Man”

A Gutten Shabbos and a gezunta vinter!

Sat, August 15 2020 25 Av 5780