The Challenge of Living Torah

The Challenge of Living Torah

Dec 11, 2009 By Arnold M. Eisen | Commentary | Vayeshev

I don’t think Jews are playing out a tale for which God wrote the plotline many centuries ago. Sometimes, however, the correspondence between archetypal biblical narrative and contemporary Jewish situation is remarkable. Consider today’s parashah as a case in point.

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His Father’s Son

His Father’s Son

Dec 12, 2014 By Arnold M. Eisen | Commentary | Vayeshev

We stand in a very long line of children of Israel who have been fascinated with Joseph, the first person to have stood in that line. It’s hard in 2014 to see him, like the Rabbis, as a great tzadik, even if he did resist the temptation of betraying Potiphar by sleeping with his wife; brought his brothers to teshuvah (repentance) through an elaborate and risky ruse; forgave them for selling him into slavery; and apparently administered the entire wealth of Egypt without ever profiting personally from his position. Joseph seems too worldly for the role of tzadik, too complex, too much a man of action rather than reflection.

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Vayeshev

Vayeshev

Jan 1, 1980

1 Now Jacob was settled in the land where his father had sojourned, the land of Canaan. 

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Vayeshev

Vayeshev

Jan 1, 1980

6 Thus said the Lord:

For three transgressions of Israel,
For four, I will not revoke it:
Because they have sold for silver
Those whose cause was just,
And the needy for a pair of sandals.

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Redemption in the Dark Pit

Redemption in the Dark Pit

Dec 5, 2015 By Jason Gitlin | Commentary | Vayeshev

Old pirates, yes, they rob I;
Sold I to the merchant ships,
Minutes after they took I
From the bottomless pit.

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The Values of a Jewish Home

The Values of a Jewish Home

Dec 5, 2015 By Matthew Berkowitz | Commentary | Vayeshev

A few weeks ago, Etgar Keret, an accomplished author on the Israeli literary scene, made a pilgrimage from his home in Tel Aviv to JTS’s Schocken Institute in Jerusalem to address a group of rabbinical students from JTS and HUC. Among the many thoughtful and reflective insights he shared, he spoke of the need for Israeli society to reflect the best of Jewish values. 

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