[Avodah] Rasha or tzadik from the womb?

Zev Sero zev at sero.name
Sun Jul 4 22:34:23 PDT 2021

On 4/7/21 4:29 am, Marty Bluke via Avodah wrote:
> How does this fit in with bechira, free will? What bechira does a fetus 
> have? How can a fetus be a rasha or a tzadik? What does that mean? In 
> fact the Gemara states that the yetzer hara only enters a person after 
> they were born.

The gemara in Nidda says "Tzadik verasha lo ka'amar"; the angel doesn't 
say whether the person *will* be a tzadik or a rasha.  But that doesn't 
meant the person is a blank slate and has no tendencies one way or the 

A person is created with certain tendencies.  Certainly things he's 
drawn to and others he's repelled by.   He then has the bechira to go 
along with those tendencies, or to defy them, or to channel them in 
positive or negative ways.

A baby's neshama may not yet be within him during pregnancy in the same 
way that it will be after birth, and certainly not as it will be after 
bar mitzvah, but the body has its inbuilt tendencies, which we now know 
are often genetically determined, and thus nothing to do with the neshama.

Zev Sero            Wishing everyone a healthy summer
zev at sero.name

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