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Key Concepts of Mishlei 10-25 (Reality)
In this world of fantasy, it is often difficult to distinguish what is real from what is unreal. Ultimately, that which has a permanent existence is real, whereas that which is like a passing storm is unreal. As long as the rasha (wicked person) is prospering, he may appear to be a living example of reality, but once he is gone, he leaves no lasting memory behind and we realize that his existence was unreal. In contrast, the tzaddik (righteous person) who lives a meangful life and contributes to the world, represents reality for he will be granted eternal life and that which he achieved will continue to support the world.
(כה) כַּעֲבוֹר סוּפָה וְאֵין רָשָׁע, וְצַדִּיק יְסוֹד עוֹלָם:
(25) When the storm wind of judgment passes, the rasha is gone, but the tzaddik is the foundation of the world.
The prosperity of the rasha lasts only until the time when he is struck by the storm of judgment. Then he and his prosperity are gone. In contrast, the tzaddik, who lives a life of service to Hashem, represents true reality. Thus, he is the foundation of the world.
(כה) כַּעֲבוֹר סוּפָה וְאֵין רָשָׁע
וְצַדִּיק יְסוֹד עוֹלָם:
When the storm wind of judgment passes — כַּעֲבוֹר סוּפָה , the rasha is no more — וְאֵין רָשָׁע – and it is as though he never existed, but the tzaddik is the foundation of the world — וְצַדִּיק יְסוֹד עוֹלָם – for the world exists in his merit.
(1) When Hashem sends the storm of judgment to pass through humanity, then everything that was built on rotten foundations, will reveal itself and collapse, and the rasha will disappear from the world.
(2). When the time comes for the rasha to be punished, it happens suddenly and quickly like a passing storm.
(3) When the storm of judgment for the rasha passes, it’s as though he never existed.
(4) When the storm of calamity strikes the world, its purpose is to destroy the rasha.
(5) The rasha existence in the world is not firmly rooted. It is only temporary and it will be easily uprooted.
(6) At the time of Noach, when the storm passed, no rasha was left because the immoral generation of the flood was destroyed.
(7) The tzaddik is the most concentrated focus of reality. Therefore what he is and what he contributes to the world, cannot die.
(8) Just as the rasha is the cause of a destructive storm so is the tzaddik the cause of stability in the world.
(9) In contrast to the speedy punishment and extinction of the rasha, The tzaddik is rewarded with eternal life. Not only that, but what he has achieved protects the world.
(10). At the time of the flood, the tzaddik Noach survived to reestablish the world.
The primary sources used for the insights illuminating this segment are listed below.
(1) – רשר”ה
(2) – אבן עזרא, המאירית מצודות, אבן יחייא
(3) – הגר”א
(4) – רלב”ג
(5) – מלבי”ם
(6) – אלשי”ך, מלבי”ם
(7) – מלבי”ם
(8) – רלב”ג, חנוך לנער
(9) – מצודות, הגר”א
(01) – אלשי”ך, מלבי”ם