We are now in the Three Weeks leading up to the fast of the Ninth of Av. Erica's book In the Narrow Places provides you with a daily reading to transform these somber days of remembrance into a period of introspection and spiritual growth.
Weekly Jewish Wisdom
JuLY 27, 2017
I learned the painful but true saying above from a collection of sayings called Yiddish Wisdom, produced by Chronicle Books. I also learned how to say, "You can't sit on two horses with one behind" and "If your grandmother had a beard, she's be your grandfather" in Yiddish but haven't figured out the right context in which to use them.
I turned to this small collection because Yiddish has a rich and creative vocabulary for expressing pain. There is something appealingly inelegant about it that feels authentic to the way real people live and think. This is in contrast to many biblical texts that we read this season in a liturgical context to mark the Three Weeks of mourning over the loss of the two holy Temples and other tragedies of Jewish history commemorated during these days of ancient heartbreak. The prophets offered us their literary prose, their complicated metaphors and their daring antics to get the attention of a misbehaving people. Yiddish gives us a simple "OY."
Tweets on the Today's Page of Talmud (Daf Yomi)
"You can never have enough garlic. With enough garlic, you can eat The New York Times," Morley Safer.
Sanhedrin 11a: "Whoever ate garlic should leave," ordered a sage who was teaching in the study hall. Do bad smells make for bad study?
"I am what is mine. Personality is the original personal property," Norman O. Brown.
Sanhedrin 10a: "A person is his own relative, but a person does not have the status of a relative about his own property," and can testify.
"Self-awareness is value-free. It isn't scary. It doesn't imply that you will subject yourself to needless pain," Deepak Chopra.
Sanhedrin 9b: "A person cannot render himself wicked" through testimony for punishment. We rarely tell the truth when it comes to ourselves.