web analytics
October 2, 2014 / 8 Tishri, 5775
At a Glance
InDepth
Sponsored Post
Meir Panim with Soldiers 5774 Roundup: Year of Relief and Service for Israel’s Needy

Meir Panim implements programs that serve Israel’s neediest populations with respect and dignity. Meir Panim also coordinated care packages for families in the South during the Gaza War.



Home » InDepth » Op-Eds »

A Mystical Spin on the Polar Vortex

Polar Vortex

The Ba’al Shem Tov teaches us to find Divine providence in everything we see and observe around us. Originally the story began with a leaf falling on a worm to protect it from the elements. But now, as we continue the story into our present day, instead of a leaf, we have a phenomenon called the “Polar Vortex.”

Before I continue, let me first preface that this article is not intended to make light of the situation. To be sure, the freezing cold weather, gale force winds, banks of snow, are not something to take lightly. But as we are encouraged to take lessons from everything we observe, that is why I sat down to write the article tonight.

Conceptualizing the Vortex

The first task when writing these pieces is to conceptualize the event into an idea. Then from that idea or isolated spark, we can then begin to implant it within the landscape of the Torah. Pertaining to the Polar Vortex, the concept we have chosen is a Kabbalistic principle called “they reversed places” (אחליפו דוכתייהו).

First let’s quote from Greg Laden’s article called: “Go home, Arctic, You’re Drunk.

“…the cold air mass that usually sits up on the Arctic during the northern Winter has moved, drooped, shifted, gone off center, to engulf part of the temperate region.  If I go even farther north, at some point it will start to get warm again… In fact, it is relatively warm up on the North Pole right now. Alaska and Europe are relatively warm as well.

The Polar Vortex, a huge system of swirling air that normally contains the polar cold air has shifted so it is not sitting right on the pole as it usually does. We are not seeing an expansion of cold, an ice age, or an anti-global warming phenomenon. We are seeing the usual cold polar air taking an excursion.”

Switching Places

Throughout history, most of the people on earth have lived in the northern hemisphere, while even today only a small fraction of people live south of the equator. Now, the Zohar poses the following question: According to this correspondence, we would expect that the further north we go—relative to most of the world’s population—the hotter it should get, but in reality, we all know that this is not the case. The further north you go the colder it gets.

The answer that the Zohar gives1 is that here we see the most important manifestation of the Kabbalistic principle called “they reversed places” (אחליפו דוכתייהו) in a geographical context. This principle exhibits the essence of what a rectified state of reality is like. It is also very similar to the notion of inter-inclusion. It means that two powers or forces have switched places. Each has left its natural vessel (in this case, its natural location on the globe) and entered into the vessel of the other. The locations where I expect to find cold and hot are reversed. The Zohar says that this is a very important phenomenon of the inhabited part of the Earth.

As mentioned above, the Zohar also knows that there is land south of the equator, but it says that this is the reason that most of mankind, from its very beginnings to date, lives in the Northern hemisphere, because only the northern hemisphere manifests this state of inter-inclusion. The land of the northern hemisphere is better suited for habitation because it is more amenable to reaching a state of the mature rectification or the inter-inclusion between two opposite states of being: that which we think should be hot is cold, and that which is cold is hot.

About the Author: Yonatan Gordon has spent most of his past 13 professional years in the world of Jewish publishing. He was the Marketing Manager at Kehot Publication Society (publishing arm of Chabad) for the better part of six years. He is founder of the website Community of Readers.


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

9 Responses to “A Mystical Spin on the Polar Vortex”

  1. Steven Gross says:

    so what are you trying to tell us

  2. Well written -It also reminds me of Buddhist concepts vis a vis interconnections with All Phenomennas. thank you.

  3. Nathan Elberg says:

    God, man, and weather:
    http://www.quantumcannibals.com/hey-god/

  4. Anonymous says:

    Michael, There is more to explain, but please contact me as there is more to clarify (but not in public) – ysgordon@gmail.com

    Yonatan

  5. Basha Kline says:

    We used to get seasons, now all we get is weather!

  6. My refection, from the Holy Bible.. 7th.and final church era. "Laodicean" …not hot or cold, they are lukewarm. Warning now. Revelation 3: 14-22

  7. It is a very famous example, how interesting is our world.

Comments are closed.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Current Top Story
Car Smashed in A-Tur 2
4 Women Survive Near Lynch on Mount of Olives
Latest Indepth Stories
MK Moshe-Feiglin

Soldiers at various hospitals complained that they experienced hostility from Arab hospital staff.

Keeping-Jerusalem

“We have succeeded in raising an ideological generation that loves death like our enemies love life”

There is not even a hint of recognition that Hamas deliberately fires rockets at civilian targets in Israel while storing arms and rocket launchers among its own civilians in Gaza.

No one with any sanity would dream of rationalizing or justifying the depredations perpetrated on the Arab world by ISIS.

With $2 billion on hand the Islamic State is an extremely well-funded terrorist group that may pose a major international crisis for the U.S. and the world. Learn about their rise to power and the toll they’ve taken thus far.

In the recent Gaza war and its aftermath, we saw a totally illogical reaction from the world.

A., a teacher: “I do not know a single Gazan who is pro-Hamas at the moment, except for those on its payroll.”

Is the global community clear in its response to these extremist groups?

Like our fabled character, Don Quixote, President Obama has constantly spawned his own reality.

Boroujerdi was informed that “the pressures and tortures will increase until he has been destroyed.”

Fatah: Hamas stole relief aid for Gaza and distributed it amongst its followers in mosques.

Can teenagers seriously be expected to behave properly when they are surrounded by so much suggestive material? Is it fair to expose them (and ourselves) to so much temptation and then tell them, “Just say no”?

Washington remains ignorant of the need to dismantle alliances with various Muslim countries.

Defeating IS requires bombing its strongholds and recognizing the violent nature of Islam.

More Articles from Yonatan Gordon
Steven Joel Sotloff as a hostage of ISIS, before his beheading.

The problem of course is that their morality is immoral, the most immoral.

Light up the world copy

Maimonides: “Your 1 mitzva may tip the scales and bring redemption to the entire world and creation”

With no shortage of leftist media that seek to distort the news, what should our Torah response be?

This week we witnessed the true unity of the Jewish people rallying around, and praying for, these three boys.

We must learn how to portray reality correctly and in a positive way.

The moon-inspired public is searching for something like the renewal and redemption of the Jewish people.

In contrast to the hate-filled stones thrown by Arabs, Jews threw non-physical ‘stones’ of love.

Inspiring thoughts about memory, completing tasks, marketing, and anorexia.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/indepth/opinions/a-mystical-spin-on-the-polar-vortex/2014/01/08/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: