Sunday, July 22, 2007

Lehavdil

One of my commenters took offense at my use of the word "Lehavdil" to distinguish between yeshivish and the chassidish books that talk about meditation. He seems to have taken it to mean that I put "my" affiliation (misnagdish) as Good, while "his" affiliation (chabad) as Bad. And looking at some posts on the Web, I can see how he took it that way.

However, Lehavdil just means to separate. In its most widely-known context, in the Havdalah prayer, havdalah (hamavdil, in the instance) separates both between equals (light/dark, day/night) and lesser/greater (Shabbat/workweek, Israel/other nations). So the word itself really doesn't denote anything comparative. However, in popular usage, I now see that it does. So I take it out of my post - since I didn't mean to imply anything comparative.

4 comments:

Anonymous said...

Apology accepted. Shalom al Yisroel.

nemo said...

I was always taught that we never say 'Lehavdil' between two Jews... even a Tzaddik and a Rasha.

Steg (dos iz nit der šteg) said...

וירא אלהים את האור כי טוב

thanbo said...

yes, which implies that choshech is the lack of light and thus not a creation, which contradicts the navi saying "yotzer or uvorei choshech".

be that as it may, dark is just as necessary as light.