God and the Physicians

24424054.thbIt once happened that Rabbi Ishmael and Rabbi Akiva were strolling in the streets of Jerusalem accompanied by another person. They were met by a sick person. He said to them, “My masters, tell me by what means I may be cured,” the sick man asked them. “And who afflicted me?” They replied, “The Holy One, blessed be the One.”

The sick man responded, “You have entered into a matter that does not pertain to you. God has afflicted, and you see to cure. Are you not transgressing God’s will?”

Rabbi Akiva and Rabbi Ishmael asked him, “What is your occupation?” The sick man answered, “I am a tiller of the soil, and here is the sickle in my hand.” They asked him, “Who created the vineyard?” “The Holy Blessed One,” he answered. Rabbi Akiva and Rabbi Ishmael said to him, “You enter into a matter that does not pertain to you. God created the vineyard, and you cut fruits from it.”

He said to them, “Do you not see the sickle in my hand? If I did not plow, sow, fertilize, and week, nothing would sprout.”

Rabbi Akiva and Rabbi Ishmael said to him, “Foolish man. Just as if one does not weed, fertilize, and plow, the trees will not produce fruit, and if fruit is produced but is not watered or fertilized, it will not live but die, so with regard to the body. Drugs and medicaments are the fertilizers, and the physician is the tiller of the soil” (Midrash Temurrah).

Throughout the Bible are stories that illustrate Gods desire that man take care of their bodies and minds and that we take care of one another. It is believed that our body comes from God and will one day be returned to God. It is our holy obligation to care for that mind and that body. The physician has an important role in the maintenance of human life. From Biblical stories of Joseph to Isaiah, the physician played a prominent role in the Jewish society.

This blog will explore all aspects of Jewish Wellness and its roots in the biblical and Talmudic traditions. The lessons here are numerous and can lead us to a cleansing and a rebirth


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