Be-ha’alotkha—The Insecurity of Freedom

“We remember the fish we ate in Egypt for nothing, the cucumbers, the  melons, the leeks, the onions, and the garlic; but now our strength is dried up, and there is nothing at all to look at but this manna .”  (The Israelite “rabble” in Num. 11:5-6)

“Man is free to act in freedom and free to forfeit freedom. In choosing evil he surrenders his attachment to the spirit and forgoes the opportunity to let freedom happen. Thus we may be free in employing or in ignoring freedom; we are not free in having freedom. We are free to choose between good and evil; we are not free in having to choose. We are in fact compelled to choose. Thus all freedom is a situation of God’s waiting for man to choose.”  Abraham Joshua Heschel, “The Insecurity of Freedom”

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