ונאום הגבר שתום העין (בלק כד:ד)
The words of the man with the open eye.
Rashi comments that Bilam was blind on one eye. Targum Unklas adds that with one eye he saw nevuah – prophecy.
How was Bilam able to boast that he’s blind in one eye? And according to Targum it means ‘somoene who sees well,’ so how can it be explained?
A story occurred during WWII with a Nazi ym’’s who had one glass eye and you couldn’t tell a difference between his real and fake eye. The accursed Nazi once challenged the Yidden that if someone can tell which eye is glass he will be rewarded with plentiful food. But if they’re wrong, he will be killed.
Everyone was afraid to dare, but one Yid boldly stated: “That eye is the false one!” The Nazi paled and admitted that he was right. “But tell me, how did you notice which one was fake when not one person was able to tell the difference? The Yid was afraid to answer, but the Nazi promised that he wouldn’t harm him.
The Yid replied,“I’ll tell you the truth. Your fake eye doesn’t gaze at us Yidden with the hatred that emits from your real eye – and that’s how I knew right away which is the fake eye!”
The same is with Bilam. How was he able to boast that he was blind in one eye? ונאום הגבר שתום העין – I have one eye that doesn’t see, that’s closed – it doesn’t have hatred against the Yidden – and thus, with that eye, Bilam was able to bentch the Yidden.Filed under Parshas Balak |