In this week’s Parsha, Noach, we learn about the famous story of Noah and the ark. G-d informs Noah about his plan to cause an enormous flood that will destroy all of life. G-d instructs Noach to build an ark that would protect all his family, two animals from each species and seven of each kosher species. After an entire year of rain, G-d tells him, he is to exit the ark and repopulate the earth.
In this story, we see that Noah is quite selfish in terms of saving his family only, even though we learn that he is the most righteous man of his generation. On the other hand, we see in the next parsha that Avraham was an upstanding individual, who tried his best to save everyone in Sodom. Noah is described as a “tzadik in a fur coat”. This metaphor was created by Rabbi Mendel of Kotzk explaining that in the olden days, when it was winter, there were two options to keep warm by creating a fire or using a coat and the only difference between these two options was one was for everyone and the other was just for the person who was cold.
From this story we can learn to not just light the room up, but spread this light amongst others. During these different times, it is so easy to forget the most important things. There are so many ways to brighten up someone else’s day: maybe help a friend; say ‘thank you’ to your teacher; help with charity work in or out of school. The list is endless.
Something small to brighten somebody else’s day never hurts.
Ativa (Grade 10)