A Spiritual Path to HaShem for the Noachide with Kabbalistic Commentary - Class 9

The basis of these lessons uses a book titled "The Path of the Righteous Gentile-An Introduction to the Seven Laws of the Children of Noach" by Chaim Clorfene and Yakov Rogalsky.

This is Chapter 11 that comes from a blog BY NETIV / THE PATH · SEPTEMBER 30, 2014

Limb of a Living Animal

1. There is some discussion as to whether or not the prohibition of eating the limb of a living animal was originally given to Adam, the first man. One opinion states that it was included in the original commandment forbidding the eating of the fruit of the tree of knowledge of good and evil. Babylonian Talmud, Sanhedrin 56b According to this opinion, Adam, who was clearly given vegetation for food, as it is written, “And God said, Behold I have given you every herb bearing seed which is upon the face of the whole earth, and every tree upon which there is fruit of a tree bearing seed, to you these shall be for food” (Gen. 1:29), was not forbidden to eat meat, but was merely forbidden to kill animals for food. If the animal had died of itself, it was permissible as food. Babylonian Talmud, Sanhedrin 56b; Tosafot "He should eat…” What Noah was given, therefore, was permission to kill animals for food, but he was forbidden by God to eat the flesh of any animal while the animal was still alive. Gen. 9:4, Rashi, “But flesh with the life…” According to the other opinion, Adam had received six of the Seven Universal Laws and had been forbidden to eat the flesh of an animal in any manner. Only after the Flood was the leniency of permitting animal flesh instituted. Mishneh Torah, Laws of Kings, 9:1

This commandment is explicit, as it is written, “Every moving thing that lives shall be for you for food; just as the green herbs, I have given you everything. But flesh with its living soul, its blood, you shall not eat” (Gen.9:3-4). This does not mean that an animal’s blood is its soul and God was forbidding man to drink animal blood. The vitalizing animal soul is contained within the blood, and this is what the commandment refers to, for when an animal dies, this vitalizing soul departs. So long as this vitalizing soul remains within the animal, its flesh is forbidden to man as food. Lev. 17:14, Rashi; Gen. 9:4, S.R. Hirsch At first glance, this commandment seems peculiarly out of place as one of the Seven Universal Laws. How can eating the limb of an animal take its place side by side with such monumental principles of human morality as those prohibiting idolatry or murder? Besides a few scattered sociological perversions in Africa and China, one is hard put to imagine who would even consider eating an animal’s meat while the animal lives. And yet this is precisely why this commandment may well epitomize the spirit of the Seven Universal Laws. The Seven Laws of Noah, Lichtenstein, p. 56 Although mankind is enjoined to obey these commandments as they appear, nevertheless the letter of the law serves only as a minimum, a starting point, which guarantees God’s favor and ensures human morality. But, if man wishes to realize his spiritual greatness, he must tap into the infinite potential of the Seven Laws, using them to refine and elevate himself. We see here that eating the limb of a living animal serves as a hint to the potential refinement that man can attain through his eating habits and by practicing kindness to God’s creatures. For what man ingests as food is absorbed in his bloodstream and in every cell of his body and thereby becomes part of his essential being. The person who eats snakes and monkeys will surely be different from the one who eats nuts and berries. And the mystical teachings state that the Holy Spirit will never rest on one who kills any creature, even the lowliest insect, purposelessly. Kitvei Arizal

chanoch's Commentary

Remember the Kabbalah explains that the Torah is never about morals and ethics. So what is the explanation about this Mitzvah. The explanation is in the words of the Mitzvah. Do not eat a living animal or its blood. The explanation is teaching that the animal soul is in the animal but leaves when the animal dies. How does this Mitzvah relate to not mixing milk and meat?

2. The early Sages differ concerning the act of consuming the blood of an animal. Babylonian Talmud, Sanhedrin 59a The Sages say that the Children of Noah contend that they were never forbidden blood as food. Mishneh Torah, Laws of Kings, 9:10

3. The Noahide may eat the flesh of an animal that dies by itself, Encyclopedia Talmudica, vol.3, p.355 but there is an opinion stating that only the flesh of an animal killed through slaughtering is permissible. Asarah Ma’amarot, Cheker Din, section 3, chapter 21

4. One guilty of transgressing this commandment is subject to punishment by the courts whether he eats the limb of a living animal or merely the flesh of a living animal or any internal organ, even the smallest amount. Mishneh Torah, Laws of Kings, 9:10 (The actual transgression has to do only with eating; the use of the animal’s hide or any other benefit is permissible.)

5. A person is subject to punishment by the courts for eating the limb or the flesh of either a living domestic or wild animal, but not for eating the limb or flesh of a living chicken. Mishneh Torah, Laws of Kings, 9:11 Although the courts do not punish for this, it is forbidden.

(Note: Animals, birds, and fish may be killed for food in any way that man deems to be efficient and it should be done as humanely as possible. Slaughtering of animals or birds does not have to be in a ritual manner as with Jews. Fish are considered dead the moment they are taken out of the water, but even so, one may not eat a fish while it appears to be alive, as this is a lack of refinement, and the chief reason for the giving of the Seven Universal Laws was to refine the nature of man.)

chanoch's Commentary

The above few paragraphs are very confusing. They appear to contradict each other. What is the actual meaning of these sections? In my opinion, in our day we have the capability to kill animals without causing it either fear or pain. We have the ability but do not pursue this method with the animals that western society eats. This actually is true for Kosher meats and non kosher meats. If these statements of mine are true then everyone is eating meat that is not validly slaughtered. As we have learned when a rule is ignored by everyone and it no longer serves its purpose of refinement, as in this case, there is no longer a need for wake up calls like the ending of Tzarat disease for Loshon Harah. The Kashrut system that is in use today has many conflicts that can lead to meat that should not be declared kosher but is. The person eating this non kosher kosher meat is judged by the heavenly tribunals to learn to utilize Teshuvah. If they have merit they will receive a message or sign indicating that they need to do Teshuvah for eating wrong meat and perhaps other kashrut regulations.

6. When one slaughters an animal, even if its windpipe and esophagus are severed, so long as the limbs are still moving, the limbs and the meat that are separated from them are forbidden to a Noahide because of this law. Mishneh Torah Laws of Kings 9:12, However, if one eats the limb or flesh of an animal after it has been killed, but while it is still moving, he is not punished for this by the courts, for it is not actually considered the limb or flesh of a living animal. Misneh Torah Laws of Kings 9:11

chanoch's Commentary

There are vegetarian organizations that, in recent times, question this idea of animals who are dead but still moving are living animals. This halacha is what the kashrut organizations depend upon to keep this idea that the animal is dead and not living.

7. Whether it is a part of an animal that has meat with sinews, cartilage and bone, such as a leg, or even if it contains no bone material at all, such as the kidneys or the heart or the tongue, it is all the same, that is, it is regarded as a limb for the purposes of this commandment. Chachmat Adam, 27:14

8. A limb or piece of flesh that is hanging detached from its original position is not forbidden to be eaten (after the animal is slaughtered) if one could have returned the limb to its original position and the animal could have remained alive for a year. But if one could not have returned this limb to its original position so as to permit the animal to live for a year, this detached limb is forbidden even after the animal is slaughtered.

9. The foregoing refers only to a limb that is actually hanging, that is, it has been dislodged from its original position and is only slightly attached. However, if a bone were broken in a place that does not cause serious damage to the animal or bird (for example, a wing tip), if flesh covers the majority of the broken limb, then the limb is not forbidden when the animal is slaughtered. If flesh is missing from the major portion of the limb, then the limb has to be removed completely after the animal is slaughtered before the rest of the creature can be eaten.

10. If an animal has an extra limb that is located in its proper area and its presence will not affect the life of the animal, this extra limb is permitted and is not considered like a hanging limb. Double limbs that will affect the life of the animal, such as the stomach, liver, and kidney must be removed, for the law of a hanging limb is applicable to them.

chanoch's Commentary

i am not a hunter. i do not own a gun or a rifle. i would be pleasantly surprised if todays hunter follow the idea of removing the stomach's etc from their kills before they eat them.

11. Everything that is forbidden to a Jew because of the law of the limb of a living animal is similarly forbidden to a Noahide, except that the latter has the added strictness of being guilty of this particular transgression whether the animal is spiritually clean or unclean. The Jew is guilty only if the animal is of a type that is spiritually clean. Chachmat Adam, 27:13

chanoch's Commentary

Above we learned that a Benai Noach does not need to slaghter the animal in a kosher manner. This halacha says the animal must be slaughtered in a Kosher Manner. This is my opinion and why i strongly suggest that all students of Kabbalah who are Benai Noach should follow the laws of Kashrut. This is my opinion for all people since the laws of the Torah apply to all people since the Torah was given to all people at the moment of Mt Sinai.

12. Animals, together with their lives, were given into the hands of mankind. The higher spiritual rank of man dictates that he not eat the limb of a living animal. Even though human flesh and animal flesh are related, the one may be incorporated within the other through eating. But the soul of an animal may never be incorporated within the soul of man. The soul of an animal must first be separated from its physical being before the animal body may be absorbed within and become part of the human body. Gen. 9:4, S.R. Hirsch19 Yalkut Me’am Loez, Exodus 8:22

chanoch's Commentary

In actuality the animals are higher soul sparks than humans. This comes from the breaking of the vessels metaphor. The animal is lower than the human which indicates it is deeper into the Klipah. The animal body can be absorbed by the human but the soul will return to the klipah to be reincarnated with the Klipah's instructions. This is why the animal soul may not be absorbed by the human.

13. Vegetarian practices, including those of many religions (even some fundamentalist Christian sects) are generally spurious, and at the very least, reflective of incomplete theology. Lest one think that vegetarianism reflects enlightenment, it is important to remember that the ancient Egyptians were religious vegetarians, yet idolaters and moral degenerates in the extreme. Footnote not available There are four general reasons why a man will likely be a vegetarian. If meat disgusts him, or if he feels that eating meat is unhealthy (particularly in the modern age of chemicals and growth hormones), or if he distrusts the appropriateness of current methods of slaughtering, a person has every right to be a vegetarian. But, if he claims that it is cruel to eat meat, or he is vainly attempting to hearken back to the time of Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden, he denies the truth of God and places his own understanding of mercy above God’s. Since God gave Noah and his descendants the right to eat meat, this right is Divine.

chanoch's Commentary

The second part of this section 13 is based on an agenda yet it may have truth within it. Ultimately all of the reasons given are physical reasons. The spiritual reason is

A story is told about Rabbi Sholom Ber Schneersohn, who was strolling with his young son, Yosef Yitzchak. As they walked, the young boy idly stretched forth his hand and tore off a leaf from a nearby plant. His father reprimanded him for the act, reminding him that everything in creation has a soul and therefore one must be careful. If man has need for an object and can take it within the bounds that God has determined, he has a right to it, for man was given dominion over the whole world. But man has no right to wantonly destroy, even to the extent of purposelessly tearing off the leaf of a plant.