Hashgacha Pratit is defined as Divine Providence and expresses the belief that God is not only Creator of the world but fully immersed in it’s ongoing from the grand plan down to the minute details in a person’s life. Join Rabbi Dr. Stuart Fischman as he discusses this idea and explores differing traditional views of how God interacts with us in the world.
Hashgacha Pratit: An Introduction to Chazal’s Ideas on Hashgacha and Why Bad things Happen to Good People
The subject of Divine Providence- of how Hashem interacts with the world is one that we all puzzle about at least sometimes. For the most part what troubles us is the suffering of innocent people. If we are meant to believe that God is not only just but also merciful why is there so much pain in His creation?
This is a question that Judaism takes very seriously and in this series of courses we will see the various answers given by different sages to this most troubling question.
Hashgacha Pratit: Rav Sadiah Gaon’s commentary to Iyov- what or who is Satan?
The book of Iyov (Job) contains Hashem’s answer to that most troubling question of suffering. The book opens with a series of challenges posed to Hashem regarding the saintliness of Iyov. What is puzzling is not only why Hashem accepts these challenges but who is challenging Hashem. he challenger is identified as השטן. Who is this שטן? In Hebrew proper nouns are capitalized (actually nothing is capitalized because there are no capital letters in Hebrew). So we don’t know if השטן is a sort of job title or is it a name? If it is a name is whose name is it?
Rav Sadiah Gaon has a remarkable explanation for “השטן” and the question of suffering which we will study today.
Hashgacha Pratit: Why shouldn’t bad things happen to good people?
So why do bad things happen to good people? Perhaps we should ask why shouldn’t they. Perhaps we need to temper our expectations for what is called these days “exceptionalism.” The Rambam and his prominent adherent the great commentator known as the Radak explain this puzzle.
Rabbi Dr. Stuart Fischman graduated from Yeshiva University in 1980 and the dental school of Columbia University in 1985. In 1989 he began studying and teaching at Yeshivat Hamivtar and now studies and teaches at Yeshivat Machanaim in Efrat. He has rabbinic ordination from Rav Zalman Nechemia Goldberg.