"Come to Pharoah,for I have hardened his heart and the heart of his servants,in order that I may place these signs of mine in his midst."-Shemot 10:1
"For myself, I like a universe that is unknown and, at the same time, much that is knowable . A universe in which everything is known would be static and dull,as boring as the heaven of some weak-minded theologians. A universe that is unknowable is no fit place for a thinking being . The ideal universe for us is very much like the universe we inhabit . And I would guess that this is really not that much of a coincidence."- Carl Sagan,Cosmologist
Parshah: Shemot(Exodus) 10:1-13:16
Haftarah: Yiremeya (Jeremiah) 46:13-28
While reading the parshah this week I noticed something alarming within the very first verse that being that God was the cause of Pharoah's heart be hardened of course this is not the first mention of God hardening heart within the Torah but it is the first time I recognized seriously. You see before this election I prayed that Donald Trump not get elected but I like many Progressives like me have to deal with the reality that he is and like Pharoah it seems as witnessed through his recent executive orders he has a very hard heart. He is marginalizing many people last week the refugee and immigrant communities were hit hard rumor is this week those of us who are members of the LGBTQAI community could be the next targets. I have to ask is God causing Trump's heart to be hardened?For such callous to be shown to so many people I must say this may be happening.What though do I have to look forward to for the future with such such mass othering going on of anything or anyone different in the society around me?I think the answer lays within the first verse too God says"In order that I may place these signs of mine in their midst."
History has proven that tyrants like Pharoah and possibly Donald Trump fall and in their wake those whom they persecute end up having great blessings in the end. With the Shoah came the creation of the State of Israel,with the revolutionary war came the creation of the United States , with the Civil Rights movement came the end of one form of Jim Crow. All of these things I think provide a history lesson that terror only will last for a short while then shall come a time of peace. That short while at times may take time but eventually systems of oppression do fall. whether exactly or not a God or some divine is behind it I don't know but my own history of abuse within my own life has shown me that greater freedom does happen a miracle will occur.
In witnessing to the miracles though we read Moshe is told within Torah to tell us to do.Knowing that a miracle will take place or might take place is no reason to stop standing up against the evils of our today it is even more so a call to stand up against those atrocities because throughout Shemot we find that not only were the plagues miraculous ,and those many wondrous things Moshe did in front of Pharoah's priests but that this small band of slaves rose up against such a Pharoah becoming a great people. We are a miracle ourselves sometimes,our actions done in virtue shift the dynamic of history itself. So are you ready for a miracle?Let's get to work at being a great miracle against the tyranny of our day.This is our call and the action to be done now. It is the greatest mitzvah of our time.
Some questions to ponder:
Why do you think God hardened Pharoah's heart?
When have you had great moments where your world seemed like it was overrun with tyranny but experienced a great freedom after the tyranny was over?
How do you think you are a miracle?and those around you?
We all are the miracle and experiencing miracles. Let us rejoice in them !!!