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Can we please start a Torah Study thread?

post #1 of 101
Thread Starter 
I really need help and structure and such.

Pretty please? :
post #2 of 101
Cool. I'm in.

You want to go in order, by the parsha each week? It's a good time to start, since this week's Shabbos Bereishis.

Or'd you have something else in mind?

post #3 of 101
Thread Starter 
That's what I had in mind; It just occurred to me because of Simchas Torah. : Speaking of which, Umsami posted a really cool bit in the homeschooling forum about Ramadan.. Perhaps Simchas Torah would be a good place to start with Jewish holidays? :

Parshas Bereshis-- The beginning! I'd love to write more, but I've got a naked baby emergency...
post #4 of 101
sounds good to me, though I'm not sure how much I'll be able to contribute. Would love to learn along.
post #5 of 101
How odd....I for some reason thought last shabbos was breishit since it was the 1st shabbat after simchat torah. and that this week is noach. No?

I haven't looked at a calendar, and I'm not in shul any more for davening (can we say Tot Shabbat?) so I am really clueless.

I could just get much tush off this chair to look at my calendar, but if it's the case that it is B'reshit, please explain why that is?
post #6 of 101
Breishit just passed. This coming Shabbes is Noach.
post #7 of 101
Thread Starter 
See? I'm confused... but Noach is a decent place to start...
post #8 of 101
And that's what I get for not going to shul.

Okay, so just since we missed Bereishis, then, I'll stick in a quick shtickle R' Shlomo on Bereishis ...

G-d created the world in six days and on Shabbos He rested ... va'yinafash. What a sad translation, He rested! Va'yinafash ... on Shabbos, G-d gave the world a soul. On Shabbos G-d created the world of souls, of depth, of tasting that which is most real.










'K. Noakh.


I know this is for discussion and not just links, but will stick in a link. 'Cuz that's the kind of guy'i'yam. Chabad.org's parsha page "for families."





Gotta learn something before I post more. {Insert Ah-nold voice here} I'll be back.
post #9 of 101
What? That's it? Nothing about the nature of Man and Woman or fatal sibling rivalry or how Adam and Chava got themselves tossed out of Gan Eden?
post #10 of 101
I'm in! I have been trying to do more with the kiddos. Rivka came home yesterday asking for a coloring picture of Noach so I guess she's learning in gan.
post #11 of 101
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ruthla View Post
What? That's it? Nothing about the nature of Man and Woman or fatal sibling rivalry or how Adam and Chava got themselves tossed out of Gan Eden?


Naaah. Everyone does that stuff. BTDT.



Am all up for a discussion of Migdal Bavel ("tower of Bavel") ... mankind working together, unified toward a single purpose, and then WHOOOSH disunity, whomped right down on us.

Then again, it's instigated by Nimrod, the evilest of all evilests ... so unity in the service of evil ??? ...

I mean, the tower to me never looked like a bad thing. People wanting to raise themselves up, reach higher ... or maybe I'm too busy enjoying the metaphors to see the bricks.

The midrash says that the only people who stayed away/uninvolved from the construction of the tower were Noakh, Sheim & Ever, and Avram (not yet called Avraham)
post #12 of 101
Thread Starter 
Okay-- what all happens in this parsha?

I went looking for my Tanach... and realized that I don't have a single copy on this floor of the house. I don't know if it even moved with me the last time, it may still be at my mom's. :
post #13 of 101
my father's hebrew name is Avram. His parents did not know (I guess) that it should be Avraham. It is a big deal because on my ketubbah it is written as Avraham, even though that's not his name! I find it interesting that you cannot use the name Avram. Anyone know why?
post #14 of 101
One theory I heard about Babel is that it was about people putting their faith in technology/their own abilities to manipulate the world over faith in Hashem.
post #15 of 101
Quote:
Originally Posted by eilonwy View Post
Okay-- what all happens in this parsha?

I went looking for my Tanach... and realized that I don't have a single copy on this floor of the house. I don't know if it even moved with me the last time, it may still be at my mom's. :
Rynna - The Parsha is easily accessible on-line. I am sure other sites have it also, but I use Chabad.org
Big surprise there

This is one of my favorite parshas - really only because I am named for the dove that Noach flew off the ark.

I have always found Noach to be a bit of an enigma though...

ETA: I was just checking out the parsha page I linked to and found this quote from Rashi which I don't think I have ever heard before but definitely explains my problems with Noah:

"Noah was a righteous man in his generation (Genesis 6:9)

There are those amongst our sages who interpret this as praise: How much more so would he have been in a generation of righteous people. And there are those who interpret it as a condemnation: In accordance to his generation he was righteous; but if he would have been in Abraham's generation, he would not be regarded as anything."
post #16 of 101
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by yonit View Post
Rynna - The Parsha is easily accessible on-line. I am sure other sites have it also, but I use Chabad.org
Big surprise there
Yeah, I Googled.. Still, I figure (hope?) that there are people reading along who are interested in following the conversation... so an overview might help.

However, I can take a hint and do it .

Noach in a Nutshell
  • Step one: The world's a mess, full of vice and corruption. God says to Noach, "Build an ark, I'm gonna wash this madness out of my hair," (though not in so many words). Noach does as he's bidden, stuffs his family and a bunch of critters aboard the ark and...
  • Step two: The flood comes. Deluge, even, 40 days and 40 nights. The waters sit around for 150 more days and nights, the ark bobs along. Noach finally is instructed to leave the ark a full year after the onset of the flood. :
  • Step three: Noach builds an altar and God promises never to do it again.
  • Step four: Noach gets smashed and one of his kids isn't very nice about it.
  • Step five: Stuff about the descendants of Noach.

So, for the first bit: The man, the ark, the animals, the rain.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bereshis
"Noah was a righteous man in his generation (Genesis 6:9)
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rashi?
There are those amongst our sages who interpret this as praise: How much more so would he have been in a generation of righteous people. And there are those who interpret it as a condemnation: In accordance to his generation he was righteous; but if he would have been in Abraham's generation, he would not be regarded as anything."
I totally remember this discussion every school year in elementary. A righteous man in his time... There are all sorts of midrashim (stories, right?) surrounding Noach. Do I see it as a condemnation? Yes and no. To use an analogy which currently has relevance to my daily life, perhaps Noach was a highly gifted child in a small, back-of-beyond school district. Yeah, he was a big fish in a small pond. And yeah, in a bigger pond there may well have been bigger fish... but he still would have been something special, and perhaps given a more optimal environment something great. I think that maybe there's no way to know the true extent of his potential because he was never given the opportunity to be tested out of level.

Noach was supposedly born without a foreskin; My understanding of this was that he was, in some way, closer to God than the average human male and that this was symbolic of that connection. I guess I sort that all into the "he probably had more potential than he got the chance to use" argument. On the other hand.. being stuck in a proverbial small pond, he never had any reason to work hard and prove himself. Perhaps his capacity for righteousness was just as great as Avraham's or Moshe's, but there was never a need for him to demonstrate that at all so he didn't... and perhaps, as with high intellect, he stagnated to some degree on his righteous path.

(And, while this is sooo interesting to me and i totally want to continue the convo... any ideas about what i could say to the kiddles? )
post #17 of 101
Quote:
Originally Posted by dara00 View Post
my father's hebrew name is Avram. His parents did not know (I guess) that it should be Avraham. It is a big deal because on my ketubbah it is written as Avraham, even though that's not his name! I find it interesting that you cannot use the name Avram. Anyone know why?
I don't think there is a prohibition on using the name Avram. I certainly knew men with that name in Israel - though I also knew guys named Nimrod . My guess though is that your father's name is "Avrum" which is a Yiddish nickname for Avraham.
post #18 of 101
Quote:
Originally Posted by eilonwy View Post

I totally remember this discussion every school year in elementary. A righteous man in his time... There are all sorts of midrashim (stories, right?) surrounding Noach. Do I see it as a condemnation? Yes and no. To use an analogy which currently has relevance to my daily life, perhaps Noach was a highly gifted child in a small, back-of-beyond school district. Yeah, he was a big fish in a small pond. And yeah, in a bigger pond there may well have been bigger fish... but he still would have been something special, and perhaps given a more optimal environment something great. I think that maybe there's no way to know the true extent of his potential because he was never given the opportunity to be tested out of level.


So this isn't my khiddush (new insight) but I'll give it over l'zekher nishmas (in memory of the spirit of) R' David Hertzberg z'l ... since it's from him :


Rashi gives over that Torah ... that he was (a) righteous surrounded by evil, so how much more so would he have been righteous if he lived in a time of goodness, surrounded by it and being influenced by it ... or (b) that he was righteous compared to the evil around him, but if he was in a generation of goodness he would have been considered as nothing.

The Talmud tells us that these opposing opinions come from (drumroll, please) R' Yokhanan (the perfect tzaddik) and Resh Lakish (the reformed master thief).

So the Ishbitzer says that each opinion comes from each guy's place ... one the tzaddik, one the BT (ba'al teshuva/"returnee") ... R' Yokhanan the tzaddik expects perfection from himself and from Noakh, and so can only see Noakh as a tzaddik when compared to evil. Resh Lakish, though, the perfect ba'al teshuva, sees what the Talmud meant by the saying that a tzaddik can never reach the same heights as a ba'al teshuva ... ie., that Noakh's goodness even while living in the midst of nastiness enables him to reach even higher than even the highest tzaddik ...

post #19 of 101
Noach.
post #20 of 101
Yeah, except that I spell it Noakh.
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