Thursday, December 10, 2009

Yoma 35b

...A sensuous person will be asked, "What stopped you from learning Torah?"

"What should I have done?" he will excuse himself. "I love life - it is full of pleasure and beauty. I was unable to control my passions, because I was given this nature. How could I spend time cooped up in some room studying Torah?"

He will be told, "Your excuse is not acceptable. Are you more handsome than Joseph? Potiphar’s wife tempted him daily, yet he overcame his evil inclination. Were you more surrounded by material temptations? He was second in command over all of Egypt, a civilization of wealth, beauty, and sensuousness. Yet he devoted himself only to God’s will. Why couldn’t you take an example from him?"

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