Friday, June 29, 2007
Scientists have long been puzzled by the phenomenon of animals sensing danger ahead of time. In many instances there are logical, plausible answers – seismic vibrations, electro-magnetic tensions and the like. But the instances when such explanations are totally out of the question, are all too many – horses going wild and breaking out of their stables hours before a fire caused by a short circuit, lightning or cigarette, rats jumping ship prior to its sinking – regardless of weather conditions and dogs dragging their owners out of a house bound to be crushed by an avalanche – long before the avalanche itself starts - are just a few of myriads of such examples.
Bil’om didn’t understand why his donkey stalled in middle of the road, and why she crushed his leg against the wall. Rash”i explains that animals can see things what humans can’t; the Angel of G-d was standing ahead of him with his wielded sword – and if not for the donkey, he would have slain Bilom. Despite that, he went ahead to curse Bnai Yisroel – but he was just beating a dead horse.