web analytics
April 23, 2014 / 23 Nisan, 5774
At a Glance
Judaism
Sponsored Post
Spa 1.2 Combining Modern Living in Traditional Jerusalem

A unique and prestigious residential project in now being built in Mekor Haim Street in Jerusalem.



Home » Judaism » Parsha »

Man Serving Hashem – The Center Of Creation


Share Button

        The brothers of Yosef referred to him as the “the dreamer.” (Beraishis 37:19). Although the brothers seemed to have used the title in a disparaging manner, Yosef’s life was, in fact, inextricably tied to dreams.
 
         Yosef engendered the envy of his brothers when he shared his two dreams with them. Later he correctly interpreted the dreams of the ministers of Pharaoh, and rose to glory when he was called upon to shed light on the dreams of Pharaoh himself. The two original dreams of Yosef, and their significance in the events of the lives of the children of Yaakov, compel us to study them carefully and glean important messages from their meaning.
 
         Yosef’s first dream (37:7) was about 11 sheaves of grain in a field bowing to the center sheaf, representing the 11 sons of Yaakov bowing to Yosef. His second dream (37:9) was all about heavenly matters. In this dream, the sun, the moon and the stars were bowing to him.
 
         Yosef aroused the envy of his brothers when he related these dreams to them. However, Yaakov Avinu had a different “interpretation” of the dreams of his son. While he adopted an external pose of annoyance with Yosef, the Torah relates that Yaakov “guarded” the dreams and anxiously waited for them to come to fruition (37:11; see Rashi).
 
         This brings us to question – what did Yaakov Avinu see in the dreams of Yosef that the brothers missed?
 
         Rashi lists several similarities between the lives of Yaakov and his favorite son, Yosef (Eleh toldos Yaakov, Beraishis 37:2, see Rashi). In that light, it is interesting to note that Yaakov Avinu also dreamed of the same two elements – earthly and heavenly matters – when he was sleeping in Bais El on his way to the house of Lavan (28:12). He dreamed of a ladder standing on earth that reached the heavens. However, that is where the similarities ended. Yaakov’s dream was all about transcending the earthly and climbing the ladder to dwell in the presence of Hashem. The central figures in Yaakov’s dream were the angels.
Yosef’s dreams were about Yosef, with all participants in the dreams paying homage to him.
 
         That being the case, the brothers of Yosef seemed to be correct in their contempt for their brother’s view of things. Why then, did Yaakov guard the dreams and expect positive outcomes from them?
 
         The answer may be that Yaakov understood the deeper meaning conveyed in the dreams of his son. Yosef was thinking of man in his highest state – as the center of creation itself. Yosef was not egotistical; he was thinking about the awesome responsibility of man to serve Hashem. Yosef, who was to become the visionary leader of the entire world, and who was the virtual firstborn1 of Yaakov, was dreaming of the limitless potential of the human being to become the center of creation. After all, Hashem created this world – earthly and heavenly things – so that man can serve Him and thereby bring fulfillment to His world (Rashi, Beraishis 1:1, Beraishis Rabbah 1:6). Yaakov’s dreams were about angels; Yosef dreamed about heavenly humans.
 

         Yaakov realized that the brothers misunderstood Yosef. He was upset that Yosef shared his vision with his siblings and aroused their envy. At the same time, Yaakov was “guarding” the dream and hoping for its eventual fulfillment. As Rashi explains, Yaakov was hoping for these lofty dreams to come true.

 

Passing The Tests

 

         Over the following 22 years, Yosef was severely put to the test. He was sold as a slave and sent to Egypt, demoralized and alone. He was tested by the wife of Potifar, and then spent 12 years in a dungeon. Having passed the trial of loneliness and deprivation, he was then faced with a greater challenge: glory and royalty. Yet Yosef remained the humble servant of Hashem throughout these divergent phases in his life (see Rashi, Shemos 1:5). His faith in Hashem remained intact, and of all our great patriarchs and tribes, he alone earned the title of Yosef HaTzadik, Yosef The Righteous one.
 

         Yaakov’s confidence in his son was rewarded. Yosef emerged from his trials and tribulations as the deserving leader of the world. The sheaves of the world, the people, were paying homage to him as they came to Egypt to purchase grain for their families. More importantly, the heavenly objects were bowing to him as well. Yosef had brought meaning to the world of Hashem. All celestial bodies joined in paying tribute to Yosef – and to his Creator, Hashem.

 

[1] Yosef received the double portion that a bechor is entitled to, when two of his sons became shevatim of Yaakov

 

         Rabbi Yakov Horowitz is the founder and Menahel of Yeshiva Darchei Noam of Monsey, and the founder and Program Director of Agudath Israel’s Project Y.E.S. His presentation on “Different Strokes – Helping Your Child Succeed by Understanding His/Her Learning Profile,” is now available on CD.
 

For more information on this and his “Raising Your Adolescent Children CD/DVD, visit www.rabbihorowitz.com, e-mail jp@rabbihorowitz.com or call 845-352-7100 x 133.

Share Button

About the Author: Rabbi Yakov Horowitz is founder and dean of Yeshiva Darchei Noam and founder and director of Agudath Israel's Project Y.E.S.


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.

No Responses to “Man Serving Hashem – The Center Of Creation”

Comments are closed.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Current Top Story
Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud Abbas. Who will he take to the dance?
It’s Prom Time, and Abbas Must Choose a Dance Partner – Israel or Hamas
Latest Judaism Stories
Reiss-041814-King

Amazingly, each and every blade was green and moist as if it was just freshly cut.

PTI-041814

All the commentaries ask why Hashem focuses on the Exodus as opposed to saying, “I am Hashem who created the entire world.”

Leff-041814

Someone who focuses only on the bones of the Torah makes his bones dry and passionless.

The following is President Obama’s statement on Passover (April 14, 2014). As he has in the past, the President held an official Passover Seder at the White House. Michelle and I send our warmest greetings to all those celebrating Passover in the United States, in Israel, and around the world. On Tuesday, just as we […]

The tendency to rely on human beings rather than G-d has been our curse throughout the centuries.

“Who is wise? One who learns from each person” (Pirkei Avot 4:1)

In Judaism, to be without questions is a sign not of faith, but of lack of depth.

“I’ll try to help as we can,” said Mr. Goodman, “but we already made a special appeal this year. Let me see what other funds we have. I’ll be in touch with you in a day or two.”

Rashi is bothered by the expression Hashem used: “the Jews need only travel.”

Reckoning Time
‘Three Festivals, Even Out Of Order’
(Beizah 19b)

Two husbands were there to instruct us in Texas hold ‘em – and we needed them.

Question: Why do we start counting sefirat ha’omer in chutz la’aretz on the second night of Pesach when the omer in the times of the Beit Hamikdash was cut on Chol HaMoed?

M. Goldman
(Via E-Mail)

A few background principles regarding the prohibitions of chametz mixtures on Pesach may provide some shopping guidance.

According to the Rambam, the k’nas applies to any chametz on Pesach with which one could, in theory, transgress the aveirah – even if no transgression actually occurred.

She was followed by the shadows of the Six Million, by the ever so subtle awareness of their vanished presence.

More Articles from Rabbi Yakov Horowitz
jewish psyciatrist

Those of us familiar with the do’s and don’ts of accepted practice in the mental health profession saw similar blaring warning lights in our minds, as should have occurred when the facts were made public regarding the accusations against Nehemia Weberman. This case may very well be our community’s most important abuse trial during our lifetimes. It is imperative that we have a huge turnout in support of the victim, a courageous young lady who, may she be gezunt andge’bentched, is determined to see this through to the end so others won’t suffer like she did.

Rabbi Yakov Horowitz

In part the altered lives victims of abuse and molestation live are a result of the abuse itself. But it is in part also because of the unfortunate negative reaction to the victims by their own community.

These lines are written in loving memory of our dear father, Reb Shlomo Zev ben Reb Baruch Yehudah Nutovic, a”h, whose first yahrzeit is 7 Menachem Av. May the positive lessons learned from this essay be a zechus for his neshamah.

All responsible leaders in our community have roundly condemned the recent violence in Beit Shemesh and Meah Shearim.

A surefire way to gauge the generation in which a person was raised is to have him or her fill in the following sentence: Where were you when ?”

Baby Boomers would ask, “When President Kennedy was shot?” Thirtysomethings would respond, “When the space shuttle exploded?” Today’s teenagers would reply, “On 9/11?”

One week ago on my website I announced my intention to attend the next court appearance of a man who was arrested last year and is now standing trial on 10 felony charges of child abuse.

Dear Rabbi Horowitz:

We were taken aback when our 18-year-old son just called us from Eretz Yisrael (we live in Europe) and told us that he was coming home and wants to immediately go to work. He said that he is wasting his time in yeshiva, and just can’t take it anymore. He said that he will “run away from home” if we don’t allow him to go to work.

Digital images of the profoundly disturbing computer-smashing ceremony conducted by Rabbi Aaron Feinhandler have been viewed by countless thousands of Jews worldwide over the past few weeks.

    Latest Poll

    Now that Kerry's "Peace Talks" are apparently over, are you...?







    View Results

    Loading ... Loading ...

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/judaism/parsha/man-serving-hashem-the-center-of-creation-4/2006/12/13/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: