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Dvar Torah - Vaetchanan Nachamu

This week witnessed a number of momentous events. Perhaps the two that are the least consequential are the launch of two billionaires into space. On the one hand, the arrival of civilian tourist space flight seems like nothing to wonder at. Who cares about the pretentions and petty ambitions of two men who seemingly have far more money than they know what to do with? On the other hand, this marks the latest milestone in the long interrupted journey of mankind to master our final frontier.

When manned space flight commenced in the 1960s I doubt the early pioneers thought it would take almost sixty years for space flight to leave the realm of the government and the military. However, there were a few stops on the way, a few pauses, and for a while a collective loss of will to continue.

We find something similar with the people of Israel as they are about to enter the Land of Israel. Sefer Devarim marks the last days of Moshe Rabbeinu's life. He delivers a series of speeches to the Jews, scolding them for their frequent deviance from G-d's will and exhorting them to do better. However, he also details for them the long journey which brought them to where they find themselves now with its many breaks, segways, and seeming steps backward. It is only when they are about to enter the land that they can finally appreciate the journey which brought them there.

At the moment we find ourselves in a similar position. We sit at anther way station waiting patiently (or not so patiently) to finally leave this pandemic behind, to finally have our lives back. We must persist through this final stage, stay safe, get vaccinated and help each other through these difficult times so that when we come out we will also marvel at what we have achieved.


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