Behaaloscha Es Haneiros..”
[Likkutei Torah p. 62]
This week’s Parsha, Parshas Behaaloscha discusses a most peculiar episode that occurred with the Jewish people in the desert. As is known, during various journeys of the Jewish people in the desert, they faced lack of food and drink and made their complaint well heard before Moshe. In this week’s Parsha the Jewish people complain before Moshe that they do not have meat.They lamented over the luxurious foods they ate in Egypt, having to now suffice with only the Mun for their daily food.
In response, Moshe was told by Hashem that he would supply them with meat for thirty days. Moshe replied to Hashem with disbelief, expressing naivety in Hashem’s ability to provide so many people with meat in the desert.
Hashem chastised Moshe, telling him “Do you believe my hand is limited?” The above reply of Moshe is not only puzzling but seems heretical. How can Moshe, the most faithful of Jews, the person who led them out from Egypt and performed countless nature breaking miracles, express disbelief in G-d’s capabilities?
Furthermore, G-d already provides meat for all the nations of the world, which make up millions upon millions of people, so what would be the challenge for Him to provide meat for a mere 600,000 people?
These questions ensue a discussion on the purpose of eating meat and the effect that it has on one’s personality and soul. As the saying goes “We are what we eat” and meat contributes to a person a very specific characteristic that he can use in his service of G-d.Nevertheless this characteristic did not befit the level of the Jewish people in the desert.
The Maamar delves into the level of the Jewish people in the times of Moshe and the difference between serving Hashem out of passionate love that derives from the feeling of self, in contrast to a selfless love that focuses on the sole benefit of the beloved.
The content of this Maamar is vital for the understanding of the proper relationship that a Jew is to strive to attain with Hashem, and the proper way of serving Him.
For the full Maamar click here