Parshat Noach (נח) – (Genesis 6:9 – 11:13)
I recently learned about the addition of the line “Who makes the wind (ruach) to blow and rain to fall” to the daily prayer service this time of year. As I wasn’t raised in a house where daily prayers were even a consideration, i’m still catching up on what the traditions are in this area.
The addition of the prayer for rain is another earth-based tradition that I am rediscovering for myself. These words keep running through my head as I watch the clouds blow by and the rain fall in the morning and evening.
משיב הרוח ומריד הגשם
Mashiv haruach umorid hagashem
Who Causes the Wind to Blow and the Rain to Fall.
And now — we read Noach (Noah). Hmmm…..wind and rain seem to be recurring themes here too. Rain falling isn’t such a good thing here. Rain and tears = destruction of humanity. Wind blowing though, removes the clouds and restores hope. The word for wind (הרוח) used here is also the word for spirit.
So long as the earth endures,
Seedtime and harvest,
Cold and heat,
Summer and winter,
Day and night
Shall not cease. (JTS)
Earth, wind, rain — earth-based Judaism has it’s clear foundations in the book of Genesis. The beginning is the earth and we return to her when our life is done. I know many that walk similar paths to me that don’t like to read scripture. Mostly because so much is male-dominated language and the ideas are counter to what they believe. Me, I love this stuff. I think the challenge is to figure out what we’re supposed to learn from it all and then what to do with what we learn.
p.s. This great shot of the ostriches sticking their heads out of the window was taken at a place called Thanksgiving Point Gardens in Utah by mharrasch. This person took a whole bunch of pictures of this place including quite a few of the Noah’s Ark sculpture.