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Sunday, May 30, 2021

Halachic Times (Zmanim)
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Jewish History

R. Yehuda ibn Attar (1655–1733), who served as rabbi in Fez, is regarded as one of the greatest leaders among Moroccan Jewry. A saintly and pious man, he was known as a miracle worker and was revered by the local Jews and Muslims alike. He refused to accept a salary from the community, working as a goldsmith instead.

It is related that he was once thrown into a lion’s den and miraculously survived unharmed (Shem Hagedolim). This protagonist of this story is often said to be—apparently in error—R. Yehuda’s kinsman, R. Chaim ibn Attar (see link below).

Link: Rabbi Chaim ibn Attar

Daily Thought

“They are stronger than us.” —The spies.

“They meant to say that the people of the land are stronger than G‑d. So to speak, the homeowner can’t remove his own belongings from his home.”—Talmud, Sota 6b.

They saw the miracles in Egypt, they witnessed Pharaoh and his army drowning in the sea.
They ate manna from heaven and they heard the mighty voice of G‑d at Mount Sinai.
How could they imagine any people or any force in this world to be more powerful than the G‑d who created everything from nothing?

But the problem was that they had witnessed G‑d disrupting the natural order of things. They had yet to see Him play by the rules of the game.
They had witnessed a G‑d beyond all things, but had not yet seen that the same G‑d was also within all things.

And so now, when they were to enter the land themselves, as mortal beings with mortal powers, to conquer the land, plow the land, sow and harvest from the land by their own hands—

Now they said, “Only by an open miracle can we win. But here we are asked to win by natural means. That is not possible.”

If they had asked Moses, what would he have said?

That these laws of nature, they are nothing but G‑d's miracles in disguise, doing His will and concealing themselves within a weave of endless patterns.
Go out into the world and you will see: He created a world in which He can achieve anything He desires in any way He pleases.

And not only that, but He can do it through you.

Likutei Sichot, Vol. 4, pp. 1041-1047