Bas~Melech does not endorse any off-site content.

Sunday, December 21, 2008


I just realized that I really miss science. Before I fell in love with teaching, I and many of my friends were sure I would end up in some field of science, like medicine or biochemical research or something. Science has always held a special fascination for me.

This semester I had to go back and take a core science class that I'd missed earlier. As the students to my right and left scribble notes about cellular functions, protein synthesis, and genetic mutations, I sit spellbound -- if not agape, then muttering "Incredible! O G-d, You are unbelievable!" I ponder the intricacies of the world's structures, so elegantly producing innumerable outcomes, and realize that no matter how much explaining you do, the bottom line is always a miracle.

That is what I miss about science.

I'm not sorry I put science aside to go into teaching. First of all, teaching allows me opportunities to transmit my passion to students while keeping up my own learning. Secondly, I don't think I have the patience for science. The more you discover, the more you realize how much is still unexplained. But still, it's nice to keep an eye on it.

I was so excited to find this video of R' Avigdor Miller's classic shmeuss about appreciating nature. Ever since becoming familiar with his works, I have always regretted not knowing about this gadol in his lifetime. Being able to see his face and hear his voice is a gift.

This lesson is particularly timely as Chanukah approaches. One of the key lessons of Chanukah is appreciating the "small" miracles of everyday life. The great miracles open our eyes to G-d's prescence, and then we can begin to see it in everything. This is one reason why we celebrate for eight days. The menorah had enough oil for the first day, so one could argue that the miracle began on the second day and we should only be celebrating seven days of Chanukah. However, the realization that HaShem is the one keeping the menorah burning makes us recognize that even the natural burning of oil is a miracle designed by HaShem and performed on a regular basis.

So as Chanukah nears and finals approach, take a deep breath and catch a miracle in action!

13 comments:

nmf #7 said...

That is exactly how I feel about science. Every cell- every tiny structure in the body- it's just fascinating how many nissim go on constantly!
I can hear R' Avigdor Miller's voice echoing in my head- "There is nothing more miraculous and delicious than an apple..."

Freilichen Chanukah!

Sick of Shidduchim said...

WOW BM that was great!! Put me right in the mood of Chanukah!! And Btw i also always loved science b/c of that. Its truly unbleievable!!

badforshidduchim said...

So, when are you joining me? ;-)

corner point said...

Beautiful! :-)

I so regret that the first time I ever heard Rabbi Avigdor Miller's name was over the public radio on the day he was niftar...

The Babysitter said...

Bas Melach: hey, I don't know if you do memes or not, or if you already did them. But just wanted to let you know, I tagged you Here

(Thanx for all those comments on the pictures, they were fun to go through)

I'll be back here to comment on the actual posts.

KT said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
KT said...

Nice blog (I just found it lol). I like this post, it pertains a lot to me.

I also beleive that learning science is like learning of G-d's miracles.

What's funny is that my friends didn't believe me when I changed my major to a science field (I hated learning it in HS)

Keep on enjoying it!:)

The Babysitter said...

wow, I've never seen a video of R' Avigdor Miller before. I've heard his voice on tapes, and my brother used to speak about what he read, and it always seemed so serious and critisizing. After watching this video now I can better appreciate what he says, cause he did have a little humor in him. I've heard of the famous apple before, and it truly is amazing what Hashem has created. In HS sometimes by Chumash my teacher would bring in what R' Avigdor Miller said, and it always sounded so good and inspiring. So it's like I've had 2 images of him in mind. Now I was able to put the two together.

O, and I always loved science too, starting in 7th grade, science became my favorite subject.

I took 2 core sciences, by Geology it was truly amazing to see all the different types of rocks. Of course what the prof said about the age didn't make sense, but it was cool to see how there are different types. With biology, I took it online so I didn't get the same experience out of it.

"teaching allows me opportunities to transmit my passion to students while keeping up my own learning."

That's an excellent way to put it.

I haven't thought about that with the menorah burning for 8 days, and the first day is also counted. That is a great lesson.

FrumBusinessGuy said...

Check out my new Blog on MAKING MONEY at http://frumandmakingmoney.blogspot.com/

Floating Reflections said...

It was through watching and marveling over nature that gedolim learnt and knew what today we learn in school through text books, what a pity.

David_on_the_Lake said...

Thanks for the clip...

Science is so fascinating..
learning about how things work...and most of all..how incredibly little we know and understand...

chavamf said...

I just discovered your blog yesterday, and I haven't been able to pull myself away. BA"H you have a tremendous gift with words. I've been reading a lot of your earlier posts, and many pushed me to tears. When Hashem gives you such a gift, He wants you to use it! Keep on writing.

Bas~Melech said...

Hey, just wanted to thank y'all for the warm comments and welcome all you new readers! I do hope you stick around, I'm not gone, just a little preoccupied, but will be back soon iy"H.