CTN Torah Minute Home
O.K. There’s tremendous value in doing a Mitzvah even if we can’t understand it.
It can be a show of our love for G-d. And our appreciation of all He gives us.
But does Jewish tradition offer any insight into what the message of Shaatnez may be.
Here’s a fascinating idea.
It goes back again to how the Torah tells us about Shaatnez.
“Love your neighbor as yourself… Do not wear a mixture of wool and linen”.
Is it possible that there’s a connection between the two?
Between loving your neighbor and Shaatnez!
… Who was the first person in the Torah who did not love his neighbor?
Cain. (Genesis, 4)
If you remember, Cain and Abel both brought offerings to G-d.
Cain brought from his crops. And Abel from his flock.
Abel’s offering was accepted and Cain’s was not.
Cain was jealous. Got angry. And killed Abel.
And when G-d asked Cain about Abel?
He said those infamous words, “Am I my brother’s keeper”?
… There’s a Jewish tradition that tells us what Cain and Abel had brought.
Cain’s crop was flax. Linen. And Able’s flock was “wooly” sheep.
So the Torah tells us to love our neighbor and to not wear Shaatnez.
It wants us to think about the story of Cain and Abel when we get dressed!
So we should not be like Cain who was jealous about his brother’s success.
But just like we want to be blessed? We should be happy when someone else is blessed.
We should always think of the needs of others. And do acts of kindness.
Because Cain was wrong.
We are our brother’s keeper!