And he left! -and why we sometimes must leave…

…because for safety’s sake, sometimes, one has to leave, well, almost everything…

This week’s portion is Parashat Vayetzei / פרשת וַיֵּצֵא traditionally covering Genesis 28:10-32:3, and this year’s Triennial cycle covers readings Revi’i & Chamishi (4th and 5th readings of the Annual Cycle ). It’s the famous Stairway to Heaven parashah, but many of us read that part last year.

Parashat Vayetzei 5781 / פרשת וַיֵּצֵא
Triennial – year 2
  1. 1: 30:14-16
  2. 2: 30:17-21
  3. 3: 30:22-27
  4. 4: 30:28-36
  5. 5: 30:37-43
  6. 6: 31:1-9
  7. 7: 31:10-16
  8. maftir: maf: 32:1-3 (3 p’sukim)

I think I can sum these two aliyot (readings) up in two words: family feuds.

The 4th aliyah has Rachel and Leah competing in the womb wars, jealous of one another, explaining the names of the boys, but just naming poor Dinah, full stop.

Then, after a few spotted sheep, Rachel and Leah’s entire family seems to be jealous of them, or rather, of their husband.  And they feel like outsiders to their family, and to each other.  The commentators say that they felt sold  to Jacob by their father Laban.

So, it was time for Jacob to leave: with his wives and kids.    So, he decided, after discussion with his wives, and a dream confirming that it was a good idea, to get going.

Leaving often does not go over well with a bully who wants your time/labour/resources/honor for his own.

We see what happens next, next year…

Shabbat Shalom     ! שָׁלוֹם

Action Items:

1.) Consider your times when you may have had to leave a potentially dangerous domestic situation, or just had to leave the place you’d lived for twenty years.

2.) Share your thoughts about them with us in the comments, here, if you wish.

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Read, Write

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NaNoWriMo 2020 CE

November, 2020 CE = 12020 HE

(The previous lesson plan since this post, and the most recent lesson plan…)

36 thoughts on “And he left! -and why we sometimes must leave…

  1. I guess I’ll go first: I’ve had to leave my residence, due to physical danger, more than once, the first time of which was when I was 15. Sub-optimal, obviously, but having to leave a narrow place is never optimal, is it?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That’s a very good point, I’d forgotten about that prayer as he left. I’ve leyned the part after he divides his large camp into two parts, and reminds HaShem that he’d crossed with nothing but his staff, and now shows the gratitude (and worry).

      Liked by 1 person

        1. Yeah. Some years I find it more inspiring than other years. Likely due to tiredness. The nuisance of the Trienniel cycle is this breaking up of the parts of parshiot, though I can understand why the Masorti movement has been adopting it.

          Liked by 1 person

        2. What, you mean why the adoption of the Tri.cycle? Just that most congregations no longer have a paid cantor, and even the large ones like Adas in DC have maybe one or two overstretched rather than two or even the three in the former days, and all the congregations are encouraging as many people as possible to leyn. At TI on 16th street in DC, we still had the annual cycle back in 2012, but even then there was pressure to move to Triennial. I guess for the same reasons that the walking communities of most Masorti shuls have dwindled, too. 😦 People outside the orthodox movements do not seem to have time.

          Liked by 1 person

        3. Al that still does not explain learning on a tri-cycle. Leaving aside the issue of incomplete leyning, what would prevent anyone from learning one Aliyah every day of the week? It’s only a few minutes; I am sure everyone can spare that much time.
          Please understand, darling, that I am not talking about you personally, but only trying to understand the rationale of violating Mesorah that came down to us from Moshe Rabbeinu.

          Liked by 1 person

        4. No worries: it is just more time than most people have. I try to work or at least read through the entire (Annual) parashah, each aliyah per day, but most days I don’t get it done, certainly not with looking at any of the commentators I’ve been wanting to spend time with (Ramban, in particular).
          One masorti congregation rules that the maftir must be the annual cycle maftir in order to be able to chant Hazak Hazak after each sefer, but I agree that the Tri.Cycle really does not feel complete. I have not looked into the responsa on the question from the Masorti movement, I just accepted it when I moved to Albuquerque and found myself in very high demand as a leyner, but with no one to walk to shul with. 😦

          Liked by 1 person

        5. I think most people, many Orthodox Jews as well, unfortunately, do not know or do not fully understand that Halacha is inviolable, and it’s an obligation of every Jew to learn – to to layn, but to learn, and learn every day. If one does not have enough time for all the commentaries, Rashi will suffice, but I am sure everyone can spare 10 – 15 minutes a day, and then dedicate more time to other commentaries on Shabbat. What else is there to do on Shabbat but learn, eat, and sleep?

          Liked by 1 person

        6. Good questions. I never understood why people who lived closer to shul than I did did not have time to walk (I tried to form a ‘walking bus’ to arrive just in time for Psukei, as I really love the prelim. of Shacharit), even on Shabbat. But, even in the summers, where in DC you really want to be up early (as in Florida, I imagine)… Anyway, I cannot disagree with you, I merely offer the problem of modern life as a distraction, I suppose. I really miss the comaraderie of walking to shul together, discussing Torah along the way.

          Liked by 1 person

        7. I know how you feel about shul and walking to shul. Since March, I have not gone to shul because some people refuse to wear masks. I daven at home and wait for my husband to come back and tell me everything so I could at least feel some connection. But I miss walking with my husband discussing the Parsha. He always liked to run by me the Dvar Torah he was planning to share at lunch in shul.

          Liked by 1 person

        8. Mm, wow that fellow congregants don’t respect the feelings and health of all by wearing masks, and wow that your husband would run his Divrei Torah by you beforehand. Sounds like a warm and wonderful relationship.

          Liked by 1 person

        9. It’s a small congregation, and South Beach is a weird place to begin with. Chabad being friendly and welcoming to all, the Rabbi has posted signs, put a basket of individually packaged masks at the entrance (courtesy of my husband’s business) and placed several sanitizer dispensers in strategic places, but he can’t turn people away if they choose not to cooperate. My husband is mindful of my being in a high risk group, so he is very careful about social distancing. He is the only graduate of a non-Lubavitch (Litvish) yeshivah, so they do ask him to speak every Shabbat, and he is an excellent public speaker. He likes to sort of bounce his ideas off my brain; as you would surmise, I don’t just sit there and nod my head.

          Liked by 1 person

        1. Ah, smoothies require noisy blenders, right? 🙂 And they are cold? 🙂
          *sipping my ginger tea*
          (yes, I’m the odd one drinking hot tea in summer -hey, isn’t that also a Russian tradition?)

          Liked by 1 person

        2. It is a Russian tradition and I also drink hot tea all year round; it’s always summer here, as you know.
          Not every blender is noisy. My little immersion blender is very quiet and well behaved. I keep this smoothie room temperature and do not add ice; it is thick enough without it.

          Liked by 1 person

        3. Oh, ok, so there are quiet blenders?
          Ah, yes, Florida. Here in San Diego even the ‘winter’ days seem like spring, and I never ever thought I’d catch myself thinking this, especially as I crossed 50 yrs of age, but I am starting to sort of miss the winters (not the ice-storms and sleet of MD & DC, mind you), just a tiny bit.

          Liked by 1 person

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