Torah Thursday: Whether you are #religious, agnostic or #atheist, ancient texts hold life lessons that with thought can be applied to modern-day life. Studying them pushes you to think about what matters.
THINKING ABOUT WHAT MATTERS
The quote above ends a discussion of ParshaTzav by Rabbi Lord Sacks. This Parsha and those leading up to it deal with the construction of the Tarbernacle and includes discussion of the various sacrifices, including animal sacrifice.
The idea of animal sacrifice does not sit well with most modern people. Not that animals are treated with love and many would say are still both tortured and sacrificed for the human desire to eat meat. That is another a discussion for another day. Sacks notes the laws of sacrifice tell us three things as important now as then:
- One: violence is still part of human nature
- Two: rather than denying its existence, we must find ways of redirecting it so that it does not claim yet more sacrifices.
- Three: that the only ultimate alternative to sacrifices, animal or human, is the one first propounded millennial ago by the prophets of ancient Israel as noted above “Justice” and for all.
Thinking about what matters is the stuff of all religions, all philosophies, all personal efforts to make sense of this world, and our place in it. All the sages and modern researchers say the good life is one lived seeking justice for all. We want it for ourselves, but it will only come if it comes for all.
You job then is to speak out against injustice, support efforts to designed to further justice and always to practice kindness to all you meet.
Thank you for all you do to care and share.
P.S. This post was not inspired by WordPress’s Daily Prompt. If you are interested in it here it is: Daily Prompt: Something So Strong : Tell us the origin story of your best friend. How did you become friends? What is it that keeps your friendship rockin’ after all these years?
My answer: My best friend and I met in kindergarten. We lost contact from the second grade through the sixth, but reunited in the seventh grade. What kept our friendship going. Loyalty, mutual benefits, and history. The loyalty was a deeply held value when I was growing up. My friend gave to me and I gave to her. We still do. The longer those two qualities become part of a friendship, the longer the friendship endures.