BlogCentral: Av_a

Theologian dedicated to understanding Judaism and Christianity examines multi-cultural life in Israel.

chagall av_a 88 (photo credit: )
chagall av_a 88
(photo credit: )
Lishpot: Justices in the wilderness This week, Parshat hashavua - reading portion "Yithro" is the happy end and restart of Shemot/Exodus - Part 1. Moses reconnects with Yithro, his father-in-law, his wife Zipporah and their two children, Gershom and Eliezer. The people of Israel were dwelling under tents and were meeting with Moses every day from the morning until sunset. "Vayeshev Moshe lishpot ha'am - and Moses was sitting to magistrate the people, nation". The word has a large lexical scope. Its root is rather funny and diverting at first glance: "shafat = "to divide, decree, decide, judge, criticize", as "it was a generation that judged its judges" (Bava Bathra15b ) as " shifta (Aramaic) = childish" are linked to Aramaic: "patata" = gossip, confusing speech, from "patat" = to break, to talk flippant. The typical "patata" example is when a person repeats things again and again in a parrot-fashion, like the Talmudic example: "God be with you" (Leviticus Rabba 32). It should be noted that actions involving judging, deciding or ruling were viewed as the consequence, or at least, comparable to childlike and even childish activities. You know the same as when children play games with roles: as rulers, physicians in a hospital, lawyers - jobs that Jews love to exercise as professionals and after years of studies. The Oriental way of judging makes it also very vivid, psychedelic at times. Moshe Rabbenu was a nice man. Very obedient to Yithro, his father-in-law, a pagan priest of Madian. Zeyde (Yid.)/grandpa Yithro may be the first righteous among the nations as he saved Moses, gave him his daughter Zipporah. A thoughtful wife: she has proven to be an adult ever since they met and reminded her husband to circumcise their kids. This weekly portion is significant in many constant aspects that are essential for the spirit of Judaism. Read the rest of this blog »
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*** Previous entries Bar/bat mitzvah: gumption time or wise crackers? Im eyn: Is God among us, or not? Ma'yan: Living water and hope Mitzvot: Free from slavery, bound to God Laernen: neurons and experience Makkot: when plagues are buggin' in Bechor: mama's bigwig or God's firstborn Shemot, Exodus, or who is who? Kehilah: a call in utero Vayechi: life: what kind of living? Emunah: death or faith How many 70 nations? Bessorot tovot: good tidings Chalom: time to update our dreams? Kahal: are we members or stones? Flickering lights, surplus of light Tefillah = pray and work Wrestling Yaakov: I have a dream... Chaver: friend, comrade, rabbi or disciple... Between plenty and famine Vayetse: Gung ho and birth pangs Mamash? Who's first, last or vice versa? Born to bless Akeida: bound to live / love Lekh-lekha: out, in/into, let's move Golmi, am I a golem - to be or not to be? Bereishit: too bad to be new? Hoshana Raba - send me a good note! Sukkot: The first and the last Tiftach, open the gates Days of awe without fear Chidush: New Year 5767 Min/man hu: whose, what? Sex… Borderlands: Israelis and Ukranians Musikah: The pen of the soul Pretty pet Devorah - Devir: womanhood and righteousness Corrupt or dizzy? Fathers and citizens Repairing the world Good kids: yeladim tovim Av or Imma Days of wreath or of wrath? Job is best Unchain our hearts Bones and souls on the move Noah is avant-garde Tattoo, taboo, nu-nu? In time anytime