Thursday, January 14, 2016

Light In The Darkness

In this week's parsha, Bo, we read about the plague of darkness. There were three days of opaque darkness and three days where the darkness was tangible and rendered the Egyptians immobile. At the same time, for the Jewish people there was light.

Everything that the Torah tells us is a lesson that every Jew can learn from. Even the plagues. What the Torah tells us about the exile and exodus is particularly a lesson on how to deal with our present exile and future exodus.

What lesson can we draw from the plague of darkness, especially from the fact that there was darkness and light at the same time?

Egypt, in Hebrew, is Mitzrayim, which is related to the word maytzarim, which means boundaries, constraints or limitations. This is because it is symbolic of the limitations we experience in this physical world.

There are times in this exile, when you experience darkness, in the form of heartbreak, health problems, oppression, etc. Sometimes it seems there is no hope and that no amount of light can overcome this darkness. Other times it is worse, it can seem completely paralyzing. The struggle and pain we experience is very real and hard to get through.

Hashem is telling you here that in this place of darkness, can be found a great light, greater than anything you ever experienced before. This light is transformative, it gives new perspective and brings out new abilities. The greater the darkness the greater the light that is to be found.

This doesn't mean that darkness is good, but if you experience darkness, search for the positive in it. Use the new light to brighten your surroundings and make a difference.

It is already several years since Hashem chose to give me and my family tremendous hardships. For me it is physically paralyzing, for my wonderful wife, Dina, it can at times be emotionally and mentally paralyzing. My children are also subjected to an unwanted roller-coaster ride. I wish and pray all the time that I will be cured. But I am grateful to Hashem for the positive that came from our experience. Dina and I have been blessed with an outpouring of love from so many and our writings and Dina's talks have been uplifting people all over. All this would not have been possible without the darkness we experienced, as it brought to the fore love and abilities we never knew we had. How can we not be grateful.

With all this said, we all have had enough darkness in our lives. Now it is time for Moshiach to come and for the darkness to end. Let the light shine uninterrupted in our lives. 


  1. "Yosef Yitzchak Nechamah Dinah" has the numerical value of "Choshech Or". That is that the darkness itself shall shine as light.

  2. Also "Yitzchak" has the same numerical value of "Or".

  3. I am humbled by this. Thank you for sharing, and inspiring us all.

  4. thank you Rabbi, this is inspiring