Noach Rhetorical Analysis

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Often times we know the right thing to do. However, as teenagers and even as adults, we can get caught up in logic and abandon what we know in our hearts and in our souls to be true. Moreover, we are frequently good at starting a project but finishing it sometimes becomes difficult; especially when facing opposition and /or when we lose sight of the finish line.

These ideas present themselves in this week's parsha. Specifically, Noach knows that he needs to build a tevah in the face of communal doubt and criticism of his actions. And, notwithstanding this, he commits himself fully to building and constructing the tevah, as instructed by Hashem. Nevertheless, and despite Noach's faith in Hashem, logic seems to take control of Noach when he too becomes suspicious of
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Before they left, Rabban Yochanan Ben Zakkai famously blessed them, saying, “May your fear of heaven be as great as your fear of your fellow man.” The lesson here, is famously, that we should recognize the presence of HKB”H in every moment of our lives and act as if we would were a mere person be standing before us. Incredibly, our “fear” of people can -- but should not be -- be greater than our yir’as shamayim. A person will make sure to avoid being seen by other people, as there is a conscious fear of being “caught” in sin and be humiliated. When it comes to Hashem, it’s not enough that a person be aware that Hashem is watching him to deter that person from sinning but instead a person needs some other motivation, like emotion, to deter him from sinning.This is something which Rabban Yochanan Ben Zakkai felt was a tremendously difficult challenge, even to the best of his students. The ability to intellectualize an abstract concept is simple, but to internalize and emotionally feel a concept is something that even the greatest of people struggle
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