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Elul 22: Parenthood

by Hillel News |Sep 06, 2015|Comments

First Blast: Text

כִּי-אָבִי וְאִמִּי עֲזָבוּנִי וַה' יַאַסְפֵנִי

For my father and my mother have forsaken me, but the Lord gathers me in.


Second Blast: Commentary

The Talmud teaches, “There are three partners in a person, the Holy Blessed One, the father and the mother” (Niddah 31a). The teaching elaborates that each parent contributes half of the bodily material and God contributes consciousness, sense perception and intelligence. In our verse, the Psalmist expresses his anxiety that his parents, who were the source of his very body, have left him.


Third Blast: Practice

Our relationships with our parents can be the most important and most challenging in our lives. The Jerusalem Talmud (Peah 1:1) calls honoring parents the most difficult mitzvah (religious commandment). As Rosh Hashannah approaches, now is the time to check in about the previous year with your parents or other parental figures in your life, as key to the process of teshuva.


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  • Elul
  • Meyerhoff Center for Jewish Experience
  • 2015

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